High Court judge, Justice Dr Zein Kebonang's choice of handling the current BOPEU Court matter about the fight for the control of the Union's bank account at standard chartered bank has created conversation as to how final are the decisions of the highest court in the land , the Court of Appeal.
In many ways the court matter before Justice Kebonang is seen as the interpretation of the Court of Appeal ’s ruling regarding who really is in charge or control of BOPEU’s leadership and therefore its purse.
At worst the matter before the High Court judge is seen as a review of the Court of Appeal’s decision on the question of power wrangling at BOPEU.
The latter scenario makes for an interesting conversation as to whether legal loopholes exist in Botswana courts, allowing for a losing party at the CoA to strategically run to a lower court being the High Court in this instance and get a fresh and new favourable outcome that leaves the CoA ruling just an academic exercise without any lawful effect.
The matter before justice Kebonang has also created conversation as to whether in its freedom the High court can opt to disregard judgements passed on the same subject of BOPEU power wrangling; in light of the fact that recent High court rulings such as the three judges panel, Justice Ketlogetswe's ruling, Justice Garekwe, and lately the court of appeal were in consonant as to what status quo should be obtaining at BOPEU.
Interestingly the CoA ruling by Justice Lesetedi which seemed to end once and for all the issue of BOPEU leadership wrangling was delivered within a week of High court judge Kebonang awarding the interim order for the operation of the BOPEU bank account to a party that had lost everything at the Court of Appeal, including signatories that were nullified by the CoA ruling.
The resultant effect had been that since the delivery of the CoA ruling nullifying specific individuals as office bearers of the union, there at the same time exists an interim ruling by the High Court giving the same leaders nullified by the CoA the powers to transact lawfully in the name of BOPEU.
Awkwardly, the High Court interim order denies the recognised Union’s President Masego Mogwera and the General Secretary Topias Marenga the powers to transact on behalf of the Union, up to this day.
In fact chances are higher than ever that the rival party outlawed by the panel of three judges, justice Mercy Garekwe’s ruling, and the CoA ruling, will continue to transact for BOPEU come this monthend, after Justice Kebonang announced on Friday that he will issue ruling on the opposition of the interim order on or around July 22. By that time, salaries will have been paid, and the court of appeal ruling without force.
Or maybe it is a question of money, after all; that when you have it at your disposal in endless amounts, there isn’t such a thing as a loss in the courts, if you can afford it, hop from this court to that court, until lady luck smiles on you.