Zuma’s met in Cape Town with the Speaker of the National Assembly, Baleka Mbete, the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, Thandi Modise and the Head of the Judiciary, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng, the Presidency said.

President Jacob Zuma
President Jacob Zuma

The meeting was aimed at further strengthening working relations and cooperation between and among these important pillars of the democratic state, presidential spokesperson Bongani Majola said.

In August this year, Zuma hosted a meeting between the Executive and the Judiciary to discuss matters of mutual concern, including the independence of the judiciary. The two sides affirmed the doctrine of the separation of powers as the cardinal principle that defined their working relations.

This came after Chief Justice Mogoeng launched a veiled attack on the Executive, accusing it of interfering in the judiciary’s independence.

Joined by the Presiding Officers of Parliament, Tuesday’s meeting further discussed and explored best models for interaction and cooperation between the arms of the state and agreed on guidelines of working together in pursuit of their individual responsibilities as defined in the Constitution, according to the Presidency.

The three heads of arms of the state re-affirmed their collective belief in the doctrine of the separation of powers and to regular meetings to discuss issues of mutual concern, the Presidency said.

Zuma hailed the meeting as important and “useful in harmonizing the work of all three arms, as we belong to one state.”

Chief Justice Mogoeng said, “It was a very productive meeting. We reflected on the state of our constitutional democracy, its general health as well as matters of concern that we felt should be discussed very early on and regularly to avoid challenges.”

Modise, Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, echoed the view, saying, “It was a conducive meeting, affirming that although we are different arms, we serve the single state of South Africa.”

National Assembly Speaker Mbete further said “the meeting gave us the opportunity to look at how our constitutional dispensation was evolving and the need constantly to adhere to the Constitution of the Republic”. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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