Public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: WALDO SWIEGERS
Public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: WALDO SWIEGERS
Pravin Gordhan. Picture: TREVOR SAMSON
Pravin Gordhan. Picture: TREVOR SAMSON

The Equality Court has dismissed public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan’s hate speech complaint against EFF leader Julius Malema, who referred to him as a “dog of white capital”. 

Judge Roland Sutherland ruled that the minister must pay the EFF’s costs in the case, which marks the second hate speech victory for the party in less than a week.

“Despite the fact that the utterances were indeed hateful and aimed at engendering hatred against [Gordhan], [Gordhan] has failed to bring his understandable grievances within the compass of the Equality Act,” the judge ruled.

Gordhan’s lawyer, Tebogo Malatji, declined to comment on the decision and said his client needed to read and consider the decision first.

Speaking after the ruling, the EFF Godrich Gardee said the judgment endorsed the party’s right to freedom of expression.

He told Business Day that the party had never invited violence against any person, or Gordhan in particular.

Gordhan took the EFF leader to the Equality Court, sitting in the high court in Johannesburg, after he took aim at the public enterprises minister outside the state capture commission venue in Parktown in November 2018.

Malema referred to Gordhan as a “dog of white monopoly capital” and told EFF supporters to be “ready for war” against the minister.