South Africa

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Security guard wounded as shots fired outside Deputy Judge President Goliath’s Cape Town home

Deputy Judge President Patricia Goliath. (Photo: Twitter)

Two gunmen who fired shots and wounded a security guard outside the Cape Town home of Deputy Judge President Patricia Goliath are still on the run as the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation steps in to investigate.

The attack occurred about 11am on Wednesday when the gunmen approached Goliath’s home. The guard, Daily Maverick has reliably learnt, was injured in the hand.

Brigadier Nomthandazo Mbamba confirmed that the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) was investigating the shooting and was still on the scene. 

“No info can be given at this stage.”

The DPCI had taken over the investigation from the South African Police Service (SAPS).

The incident comes nearly two years after Daily Maverick reported on 5 September that an investigation by the Judicial Inspectorate for Correctional Services (JICS) had found that reports of an alleged planned assassination of Goliath could not be discounted and warranted further investigation.

It was GroundUp which first published a report that a senior judge had been implicated in an alleged plot to assassinate Goliath by a prisoner held in Pietermaritzburg.

The report, which named Goliath’s boss, Western Cape Judge President John Hlophe, was sent to Justice Minister Ronald Lamola and the Office of the Chief Justice.

At the time, Justice Ministry spokesperson Chrispin Phiri said the report had been referred to the SAPS and the State Security Agency “so that it can be processed within the spectrum of law enforcement agencies’ mandate”.

Goliath confirmed to Daily Maverick that on 3 June 2020 she had been contacted by members of the Grahamstown Bar, who were unknown to her at the time, and advised that a prisoner had called the office and informed them that a “hit” had been placed on Goliath’s life by another judge.

Hlophe’s legal representative, Barnabas Xulu, issued a general statement on 6 September 2021, which read: “The allegations that our client ordered a hit on the Deputy Judge President surfaced in an article published by GroundUp on 4 September 2020 and was then circulated on various media platforms on 5 September 2020. Our client was shocked by the publications by the various media houses, as the averments are baseless and false. We will attend to consultation with our client during the week of 7 September 2020 and will thereafter respond comprehensively to the allegations as contained in the publications.” 

Hlophe has been found guilty by the Judicial Service Commission of gross misconduct. He remains in his job pending his impeachment hearing. DM

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