Most read articles of 2019
Throughout the year we write articles to share information about the JSC, the judges’ interview process and the South African judicial system as a whole.
Here is a list of Judges Matter’s most popular articles in 2019.
- Five ConCourt candidates recommended to the President
Six candidates were interviewed for the Constitutional Court on Wednesday 3 April 2019 for two vacancies at the highest court. Of these candidates, five were recommended to the President for appointment. In line with section 174(4) of the Constitution the President then appointed two Constitutional Court judges from the list of five names sent to him by the JSC.
- How Magistrates are selected and appointed in South Africa
In this article, we seek to explain how magistrates are selected and appointed in South Africa. We have done a similar piece which focuses on the appointment of judges. It is important that we also do one on magistracy. Magistrates can be appointed on an acting basis (as Acting Magistrates) or on substantive basis.
- Supreme Court of Appeal gets 5 new judges
In April the Judicial Service Commission interviewed nine candidates for five vacancies at the Supreme Court of Appeal. As was the case in previous rounds for these vacancies, the candidates were grilled on divisions within the SCA and their experience of collegiality while acting at the court. The candidates all alluded to certain divisions within the court, some even mentioning a ‘top six’ who held sway in in the functioning of the appeals court. After a long day of interviews, the JSC nominated five new candidates to the SCA bench.
- Malema’s questions for judges at the JSC interviews
As one of the more challenging individuals making up the 23 JSC members, Julius Malema seldom fails to disappoint the spectators at the JSC interviews with his knack for putting candidates in the hot seat. While other JSC commissioners will stick to more conventional lines of questioning, asking about a candidate’s work experience and their understanding of the law, Malema’s questions can often come a little out of left field…
- Magistrates Matter: Turning the light to shine on the magistracy
The judicial system in South Africa comprises of the following courts of law: the Constitutional Court; the Supreme Court of Appeal; the High Courts, the Magistrates’ Courts; and any other court established by legislation (such as the Labour Court). In her thesis on the transformation of the South African magistracy published in 2007, Vanja Karth observed that “whilst a substantial body of literature exists on the judiciary and the higher courts, almost no attention has been paid to the magistracy.”
- Who sits on the JSC panel?
The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) is made of up lawyers, politicians and judges, and a lone academic. With hearings happening twice a year in the first week of April and October, you might want to tune in to the live stream of the hearings and watch the JSC strut its stuff. Here is a guide to who is who on the JSC panel.
- JOASA Statement: Thulare’s comments on Judicial Authority
On Tuesday 8 October, Mr Daniel Thulare, the Cape Town Chief Magistrate, was interviewed for a position on the Western Cape High Court bench. During the interviews he was questioned by the Chief Justice regarding comments he had made during a controversial speech at the AGM of the Judicial Officers Association of South Africa (JOASA) while he was still President of JOASA. When questioned during the interview Thulare repeated many of the assertions he had made in his speech.
- The integrity of the judiciary in South Africa
The integrity of the judiciary in South Africa has never been in question. Or so Judges Matter has thought. However, in a new survey by Afrobarometer the number of citizens in South Africa who say that “most” or “all” judges and magistrates are involved in corruption has doubled between 2002 (15%) and 2018 (32%).
- How to select Judge Presidents
A Judge President is the administrative head of a High Court Division in South Africa. The Judge President is expected to provide effective leadership to the division to ensure that judges in the division perform their judicial responsibilities diligently and effectively. More importantly, the Judge President and the Deputy Judge President must be able to provide not only administrative leadership but also “jurisprudential leadership” in the division.
- The Hlophe Tribunal
After being informed by the JSC that the Judicial Conduct Tribunal for Judge Hlophe would resume on Monday, 21 October 2019, we were then notified that the Tribunal had once again been cancelled.