JOHANNESBURG - The EFF has welcomed the Equality Court's judgment against Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.
Judge Roland Sutherland dismissed Gordhan's hate speech application against EFF leader Julius Malema.
Gordhan brought the case over remarks Malema made to supporters outside the state capture inquiry venue last year November.
Malema accused Gordhan of targeting black people at state-owned enterprises and of being a lackey of white monopoly capital.
"The EFF welcomes the dismissal of Pravin Jamnandas Gordhan’s Hate Speech application with costs, by the Johannesburg High Court. Gordhan ran to court seeking the suppression of the EFF and CIC Julius Malema’s right to free speech and political campaigning," the party said in a statement.
"He sought to suppress our right to call him out as the lapdog of White Monopoly Capitalism; more precisely a dog of white monopoly capital."
The EFF says the ruling is a victory of political rights to free speech.
"Without the right to publicly criticize those in power, like Gordhan, we are unable to exercise accountability over the executive and its decisions," the party said.
"Many powerful politicians have ran to court seeking to silence the opposition through defamation suits. They do this so that their actions do not get scrutinized, criticized and interrogation by opposition party leaders. The court judgment today is a powerful signal to all of them that they must not use our courts to curtail accountability and scrutiny over their actions."
"Long has Pravin Gordhan felt himself above the law. He has conducted himself as untouchable when he presided over cruel projects of espionage in The Rogue Unit. The EFF welcomes the court outcome and will continue its battle to expose Gordhan to the end."
Gordhan lawyers say their client remains committed to political debate that deepens democracy and freedom for all South Africans and will continue to advise him on all options to seek recourse in his case against Malema.