On 12 September 2012 the Judge President of the Competition
Appeal Court (CAC), Dennis Davis, while addressing Parliament's
Portfolio Committee on Justice stated that there were too many
levels of appeals in South Africa's judicial system. Judge
Davis argued that the CAC should be the final court of appeal in
competition matters as the process was very time consuming and
allowed matters to "drag on endlessly".
A concern was expressed that removing competition matters from the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) would undermine the jurisdiction of the SCA. Judge Davis argued that this could be done in competition matters because very specific skills were needed to hear the cases and those skills were not found in the SCA.
Currently, decisions of the Competition Tribunal may be appealed to the CAC, which in turn can be appealed to the SCA and finally to the Constitutional Court. Judge Davis appealed for at least one of the layers of appeal in matters of competition law to be removed from the system. He urged Members of Parliament to support the 17th Constitutional Amendment Bill, which would exclude the SCA from hearing competition matters. The amendment would change section 168 (3) of the Constitution, to read "the SCA is the final court of appeal, except where an Act of Parliament determines otherwise".
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.