Malema criticises candidate for judge president

2015-04-14 14:29
Julius Malema. (File: AP)

Julius Malema. (File: AP)

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Cape Town - Judicial Services Commission (JSC) member Julius Malema criticised a candidate standing for the position of Limpopo High Court judge president after he used a slogan associated with the ruling party in his interview.

Malema, who is also leader of the EFF, wanted to know on Tuesday if North Gauteng High Court Judge Legodi Phatudi was friends with politicians because he used the slogan "working together we can do more".

The slogan was one the ANC used in its campaigning.

Phatudi said he was not friends with any politicians.

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng clarified.

"Those words... could make you look like you have allowed yourself to be overly influenced or have developed an unhealthy appreciation or admiration of their expressions they have coined."


Phatudi replied that he only intended to convey that he believed in teamwork between members of the judiciary.

The JSC interviewed five of the Limpopo candidates on Monday.

One of these was Judge Thokozile Masipa, the judge in the trial of paralympian Oscar Pistorius.

Currently, the Gauteng division in Pretoria serves as the Limpopo division, with circuit courts sitting at Polokwane and a local seat at Thohoyandou.

Phatudi said he had a vision to bring the new Limpopo High Court division into the technological age, if appointed as the judge president.

Phatudi is the youngest of seven candidates, with a service discharge date of 2031.

He told the JSC on Tuesday that he had computerised his office and administration from the moment he entered the legal profession.

Paperless court

"It is where I got my unique name '', because I was one of the first attorneys in Polokwane who had an email address. It is a nickname," he said.

Commissioner Hendrik Schmidt, also a Democratic Alliance MP, asked how he would practically apply his technological vision.

Phatudi replied that he would need to organise a budget, computers and computer program, and training.

"There are some other judges who are still IT challenged and they still rely on their secretaries... We really need to train such judges."

His vision of a "paperless court" was questioned in light of the province being a largely rural area with broadband connectivity constraints.

Phatudi said his vision was to reduce the amount of paper being wasted, especially when judges printed out judgment drafts.

Read more on:    jsc  |  mogoeng mogoeng  |  julius malema  |  oscar pistorius  |  thokozile masipa  |  judiciary
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