High Court Judge Chris Nicholson took his eye off the ball and "red-carded" high-profile leaders when he implied political meddling in the Jacob Zuma graft case, the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) said on Monday.
In a unanimous judgment, five judges of the SCA bench ruled that the corruption and fraud charges against Zuma must stand - and gave Nicholson a tongue-lashing for his judgment, described as "incomprehensible".
"'Political meddling' was not an issue that had to be determined," said acting Deputy Judge President Louis Harms, while handing down judgment.
"Nevertheless, a substantial part of his judgment dealt with this question; and in the course of this discussion he changed the rules of the game, took his eyes off the ball and red-carded not only players but also spectators."
However, the SCA ruled that it was too late to strike Nicholson's "political meddling" statements, as the "damage has been done".
"It makes no sense to strike them out at this late stage of the proceedings. The damage has been done. This does not mean that the order of the court below should stand," said Harms.
full story from IOL here