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Sentencing of Dr Wouter Basson postponed to 23 January 2015

By Staff Writer
A High Court application was lodged by the legal Counsel of Dr Wouter Basson to postpone proceedings to the 23 January this year. The trial of Dr Wouter Basson focused on allegations of attempted use of chemical and biological weapons on African rebels.
He was accused of acting unethically and in December 2013 he was found guilty of unprofessional conduct by the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA), following an inquiry which lasted six years. Professor Jannie Hugo, the HPCSA professional conduct committee chairman ruled that Basson disregarded international protocols and conventions.
The sentencing proceedings commenced on 26 November 2014, however, these were postponed twice. On Monday 19 January 2015 the proceedings were postponed once again to Friday 23 January 2015 as the defence sought to obtain information from member of the HPCSA.
The postponement was granted as Basson's legal counsel requested a court order to compel Professor Hugo and Professor Eddie Mhlanga, a member of the HPCSA, to provide information regarding their membership to any of the organisations that signed the petition which led to the removal of Basson from the Roll of Medical Practitioners.
During court proceedings it was determined that Hugo was a member of the South African Medical Association (SAMA), one of the organisations that petitioned for Basson to be struck off the Roll of Medical Practitioners. The defence requested that Hugo and Mhlanga provide evidence of membership to any of the other organisations that petitioned for Basson to be removed from the roll.
The defence is also seeking a court order prohibiting Hugo and Mhlanga from proceeding with disciplinary proceedings against Basson until the finalisation of an application by the defence for the recusal of Hugo and Mhlanga is filed.
In 2002, the High Court in Pretoria acquitted Basson of criminal charges that arose from his medical misconduct. Appeals against this ruling were dismissed.

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