Tag archives: Administrative action

Administrative law: Legal status of departmental Directive

The Department of Home Affairs issued an Immigration Directive which required departmental functionaries to refuse all applications for temporary or permanent residence visas made by the holder of an asylum seeker permit. The court found that the directive was treated as binding by the departmental officials tasked to implement it and it was therefore open … Continue reading

Administrative law: Obligation to exhaust internal remedies

The Constitutional Court re-examined section 7(2) of the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act which creates an obligation on applicants for the court review of an administrative decision to exhaust all internal remedies first. The obligation to exhaust internal remedies should not be rigidly imposed nor used by administrators to frustrate an applicant’s efforts to review the … Continue reading

Defiance of law: the collateral challenge defence by Namibian insurers

Under the correct set of circumstances a party may treat an administrative act as void and await developments, which must not be ‘equated with contumacious disregard for the law by anarchists and legal delinquents’, according to a judgment of the Namibia High Court The judgment stayed the implementation and application of the provisions of the … Continue reading

Administrative action can be reviewed from when it adversely affects a person’s rights

The Supreme Court of Appeal decided that a decision by the National Energy Regulator of South Africa to determine gas prices was not reviewable at the stage when NERSA decided on a methodology to determine the prices, but was reviewable when NERSA subsequently determined the prices imposed on customers. In February 2012, NERSA concluded that … Continue reading

Deliberations of Judicial Services Commission must be revealed

The Constitutional Court has held that the private deliberations of the Judicial Services Commission in exercising its mandate to appoint judges must be disclosed as part of the record of proceedings when a decision is challenged. The judicial candidates are interviewed in public and this is followed by private deliberations and recommendations to the President … Continue reading

Constitutional Court explains the nature of the right to fair administrative action

In an important judgment, the Constitutional Court emphasises that fundamental rights are primarily meant to protect human beings against the state. All the rights contained in our Bill of Rights are very much fundamental rights, including the right to just administrative action enshrined in section 33. South Africa’s administrative law benefits natural and juristic private persons. … Continue reading

Proceedings before enforcement committee under Security Services Act apply civil standard of proof

The appellants in Pather v Financial Services Board failed in the suggestion that claims against it of contravention of the Security Services Act 2004 should have been proved by the enforcement committee according to the criminal standard, namely beyond reasonable doubt. The court held that the civil standard applies and that the proceedings and penalty … Continue reading

Setting aside CCMA decision for unreasonableness

The Constitutional Court has reaffirmed that a decision reached by a commissioner in the CCMA can be set aside if it is one that a reasonable decision-maker could not reach. Applying this test gives effect not only to the constitutional right to fair labour practices, but also to the right to administrative action which is … Continue reading

Administrative decision not immune from collateral challenge

Where a public authority seeks to coerce a person into compliance with an unlawful administrative act, that person can challenge the validity of the administrative act. This is called a collateral challenge. The right to challenge the validity of an administrative act collaterally in response to threatened enforcement arises because the validity of the administrative … Continue reading

Regulations made by regulators are subject to court review

The courts have again emphasised that where a regulatory body is established by legislation with powers to regulate (e.g. the Financial Services Board), their decision to make regulations is an administrative decision that can be challenged in court. Where the regulations are irrational, unconstitutional or contrary to law or made without proper public consultation they … Continue reading