Government to hand over three magistrates courts

Friday, March 29, 2019

Government will over the next three months hand over three magistrate courts, with Sexual Offences Courts, in a bid to eradicate gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF) in society.

The three magistrate courts to be handed over include Plettenberg Bay Magistrate Court in the Western Cape, Dimbaza and Bitji Magistrate Courts to be launched in the Eastern Cape and Mpumalanga High Court in Mbombela, and the old Middleburg Magistrate Court.

Plettenberg Bay Magistrate Court will yield about nine court rooms, including a Sexual Offences Court. 

The old Middleburg Magistrate Court has been partially revamped through inmates’ labour to serve as the local seat of the High Court.

The handing over of the three magistrate courts follows the opening of Booysens Magistrate Court in Johannesburg.

The state-of-the-art Booysens Magistrate Court, which was officially opened by President Cyril Ramaphosa on Thursday, offers a range of services and is fully equipped to support victims of GBV and femicide.

The event also saw President Ramaphosa, together with various civil-society organisations, hosting the Presidential launch of the GBV and Femicide Declaration, which is a commitment to the implementation of the decisions from the National GBV and Femicide Summit held in November 2018.

“By the end of the fifth administration, a total of 59 new courts would have been built since 1994, exceeding the government target of building at least two courts per year,” Cabinet said in a statement. –