Legal process ongoing over government’s R50m donation to Cuba – DIRCO

Government says it has noted the Constitutional Court order published on Tuesday, dismissing its application for direct access to appeal the order by the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria over government’s R50 million donation to Cuba.

However, according to the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO), government has not exhausted its legal options and the legal process is still ongoing.

In March, the High Court interdicted government and the African Renaissance and International Cooperation Fund in proceeding to provide humanitarian assistance to Cuba through the Fund.

According to DIRCO, the department applied for direct access to the Constitutional Court to appeal the order, while simultaneously petitioning the Supreme Court of Appeal for direct access.

“The decision of the latter is still awaited,” the department said Wednesday.

Meanwhile, according to the department, legal proceedings in the review application against the decision to provide humanitarian assistance are continuing in the High Court.

“In its order, the Constitutional Court did not pronounce itself on the merits of the case, as it was dealing with the application for direct access, which is a procedural matter.

“The Constitutional Court made it clear in its order that it will not hear the matter at this stage of the process, with the result that the matter should first be ventilated and heard in a different court.

“Any narrative or suggestions in the media that the order given by the Constitutional Court is a ‘victory’ in the case are erroneous, as the substantive matters relating to the review are still to be addressed in the High Court process, which is currently ongoing,” the department explained, adding that all legal routes remain available to government.

According to the department, this includes appealing the matter in the Constitutional Court once the legal proceedings have taken their course.

Source: South African Government News Agency

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