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Mr Collen Kgaolo Stephen Matshitse

Capacity: Regional Magistrate
First appointed as magistrate: 2015 (Gauteng Regional Division)
Gender: Male
Ethnicity: African
Date of Birth: August 1961
Qualifications: Dip. Juris (1983); LLB (1985) (NWU); LLM (Commercial Law)(2020) (UJ)


Key judgments:


Candidate Biography (updated April 2024):

Mr. Collen Matshitse was born in Johannesburg, the ‘City of Gold,’ in August of 1961. His legal path has been equally glittering. Perhaps his biggest claim to fame is being the first to be ‘triple-admitted’ in the North West: he was an attorney, conveyancer and notary public.

Matshitse holds (1) a Dip Juris, which he obtained in 1983, (2) an LLB degree, obtained in 1985, and (3) an LLM, obtained in 2020. In addition to these legal qualifications, Matshitse holds nine other certificates, which he has obtained over the years from various organisations and institutions, such as the Law Society of South Africa and the Black Lawyers Association.

His legal career began in 1981 when he was completing his first legal qualification at the North West University. During this period, he was appointed as a student assistant in the department of private law.

Between 1984 and 1998, Matshitse was employed as a legal assistant at the Department of Finance for the North-West Government. Between 1988 and 1992, he was appointed Assistant State Attorney by the Department of Justice. For a period of one year between 1992 and 1993, he served as the Regional Director for Land Use in the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Between 1996 and 2003, Matshitse engaged in private practice as an attorney, practicing at five different law firms.

In 2003, he was appointed as State Attorney in the Department of Justice, a position he held until 2006.

In 2008, Matshitse returned to private practice. During this period, he worked with two different law firms, until he again decided to cease practicing in 2015.

Additionally, between 1999 and 2015, Matshitse served as a Commissioner of the Small Claims Court.

Between October 2010 and February 2015, Matshitse served as an Acting Regional Court Magistrate. Then, in March 2015, he was appointed as Regional Court Magistrate, a position he still holds to this day.

Matshitse has acted as a judge of the High Court on numerous occasions. In the period between January 2016 and December 2021, he acted for approximately seven terms. During these stints, he presided over civil trials, unopposed and opposed motions, interlocutory applications, urgent applications, criminal trials, divorce matters, and appeals.

In the case of Lammerding v Lobby Room (Pty) Ltd t/a Rockets Menln , the Applicant (Lammerding) sought to join the Respondent (Lobby Room) to its main application as the Fourth Respondent, in which Lammerding sought an interdict against the First Respondent (Rockets Menlyn (Pty) Ltd) and Second Respondent (Times Square) from contravening the Town Planning Scheme and Noise Regulations. In this case, Applicant owned a property which was 330 meters from the Times Square Casino (Times Square), and Applicant’s tenant regularly complained about a noise nuisance emanating therefrom. Specifically, the noise came from a restaurant within the casino, known as Rockets Menlyn in Pretoria.

When Times Square and Rockets Menlyn failed to implement mitigating measures, Applicant sought this interdict. However, it was brought against First Respondent, Rockets Menlyn (Pty) Ltd, which Applicant discovered was only a shareholder of Rockets Menlyn. Thus, Applicant sought to join Lobby Room, which was doing business as “Rockets Menlyn,” and therefore was the source of the noise. Thus, the only issue to be decided was whether Applicant made out a case for Respondent to be joined as a Fourth Respondent in Applicant’s main application. In his decision, Matshitse explained that when deciding an application for joinder, the primary consideration is whether the party to be joined ‘has a direct and substantial interest in any order the court might make in proceedings or if such order could not be sustained or carried into effect without prejudicing that party.’

Citing Constitutional Court case Snyder and Others v. De Jager, Matshitse explained that a person has such a direct and substantial interest in the proceeding if the order would ‘directly affect such a person’s rights or interest.’ Without such a rule, a person’s rights and interests could be impacted by a judgment without that person first having the opportunity to be heard. Here, Matshitse held that the Respondent should be joined to the main application, finding that Respondent had a direct and substantial interest in the proceedings of the main application.

Just a brief look at some of Mr. Matshitse’s key judgments show some versality in his knowledge and legal experience. He has steadily worked through the various ranks of the legal profession, collecting valuable experience along the way.

Now, Mr. Matshitse returns to the JSC on his second attempt to be appointed as a permanent judge of the North West High Court. On the last occasion, the JSC Hopefully  apply his golden touch of legal knowledge on a more enduring basis.

April 2024 Interview

October 2022 Interview

October 2022 Interview Sysnopsis

October 2022 JSC interview of Mr Collen Kgaolo Matshitse for a position on the Gauteng Division of the High Court. Mr Matshitse‘s application was unsuccessful.

Mr Matshite’s interview was relatively short, by JSC standards for first-time interviews. Supreme Court of Appeal Justice Xola Petse quizzed Matshitse on a practical experience in correcting a judicial error in relation to the costs order. Matshitse fumbled but was assisted by Petse. Later, Commissioner Narend Singh asked for Matshitse’s “technical competency” in handling the “4IR”[the technical changes of the Fourth Industrial Revolution]. The 61-year old shly answered, “I won’t say I’m a computer guru but… I have a bit of knowledge but I like a challenge and would go and try… I am one person who likes technology”. The JSC was not convinced. He was not appointed.