Reports on Suspension and Withholding of Remuneration of Magistrates

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Justice and Correctional Services

21 November 2011
Chairperson: Mr L Landers (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee unanimously adopted the reports for the withholding of remuneration for the following Magistrates: Mr Jacobs, Mr Dumani and Mr Morake. The Committee also adopted the reports for the suspension of the following Magistrates: Mr Hole and Mr Jacobs. On the issue of Mr Maruwa the Committee noted that he had already resigned and it was of the opinion therefore that the matter could not be taken further. The Committee decided that the last two outstanding matters it would deal with for the year would be the Prevention and Combating of Trafficking in Persons Bill [B9 – 2010] and the discussion of the Deputy Public Protector’s salary and remuneration.

Meeting report

The Chairperson said that the Committee would consider the draft reports on the suspension and withholding of remuneration of certain Magistrates. There were seven reports in total. The Committee should now deliberate on each of the Magistrates involved.

Mr D Jacobs
Mr Jeffery (ANC) asked if Mr Jacobs had resigned.

Ms M Smuts (DA) said that she and Mr S Swart (ACDP) had enquired about this and the Magistrates Commission (MC) officials had reported back and this was satisfactory.

The Chairperson asked if he had resigned.

Ms Smuts said that the issue they had raised was immaterial to the question asked.

Mr Jeffery said that he had confused Mr Jacobs with someone else. Could the Committee move for the adoption of the formal suspension of Magistrate Jacobs?

Ms D Schäefer (DA) seconded the motion.

The Committee unanimously adopted the report.

The Chairperson said the next issue was the withholding of remuneration for Magistrate Jacobs.

Mr Jeffery said that the matter had been ongoing for years. It was not right that he continued to get paid and the Committee should approve the request for the withholding of remuneration.

Ms Schäefer seconded the motion.

The Committee unanimously adopted the report.

Mr TS Hole
Mr Jeffery asked if the Committee had received a briefing on this matter.

The Chairperson replied in the affirmative.

Mr P Holomisa (ANC) asked if the Committee had not requested more information at that particular briefing.

Mr Jeffery referred the Committee to paragraph 3.

The Chairperson said that Mr Holomisa was referring to the complaints against Mr Nqadala.

Mr Jeffery asked if Mr Nqadala was the Regional Court President in Kimberley (Northern Cape).

The Chairperson replied in the affirmative and said he was not in a position to answer Mr Holomisa’s question, the matter before the Committee concerned Mr Hole.

Ms Schäefer said that the matter on Mr Nqadala should be followed up because it was disturbing as well.

Mr Jeffery said that he was not in a position to either support or approve the suspension and perhaps he was not there during the briefing from the MC.

Mr Swart said that he supported the report; the Regional Court President was ridiculed in public by Mr Hole when he appeared before him, and this was a request for a suspension so there would be no prejudice on the remuneration of Mr Hole. The MC had viewed this matter seriously and I support that.

Ms Schäefer said that she supported what Mr Swart had said. There were other accusations levelled at Mr Hole such as the court roll being changed, Mr Hole presiding over matters he should not have presided over and abuse of judicial functions.

The Chairperson said that the key issue was abuse of authority.

Mr Jeffery requested that the Committee should add that it was awaiting a report on the matter of Mr Nqadala.

Ms Smuts said that the Committee had requested more information at the last briefing from the MC because extra paperwork was distributed on Mr Nqadala.

Mr Holomisa agreed that the request for suspension should be approved and the additional information requested should be furnished to the Committee.

Mr Swart moved for the adoption of the report

Mr J Sibanyoni (ANC) seconded.

The Committee unanimously adopted the report.

Mr C M Dumani
The Chairperson informed Members that the request was for the withholding of Mr Dumani’s remuneration. Paragraph 4 should be deleted as it was a repeat.

The Committee agreed that Paragraph 4 should be deleted.

Mr Holomisa pointed out that there was another request under Paragraph 5, should the Committee consider this.

The Chairperson said that Paragraph 5 was on a separate issue.

Mr Jeffery agreed that the issue was on the request for suspension. Paragraph 5 stated that the Committee should recommend that the Ministry should consider taking steps; this was beyond the Committee’s jurisdiction, Paragraph 5 should be deleted.

The Committee agreed on the deletion of Paragraph 5.

Mr Jeffery moved for the adoption of the report and the approval of the withholding of the remuneration by the National Assembly (NA).

Mr Swart seconded.
The Committee unanimously adopted the report.

Mr L B Maruwa
Ms Schäefer noted that Paragraph 7 of the report indicated that Mr Maruwa had resigned on 17 October, why should the Committee now approve the withholding of his remuneration.

Mr Vhonani Ramaano, Committee Secretary, said that he had spoken to Mr Meyer from the MC who had said that the Committee should adopt the report just to make it formal.

Mr Jeffery said that when a Magistrate had resigned there was no jurisdiction on the matter; this was the precedent that had been set. Approving the report did not seem viable, Mr Ramaano should check whether Mr Maruwa’s salary has been stopped and in fact he has resigned, if not then the Committee should have an urgent meeting tomorrow. The Committee should not adopt the report.

Ms Schäefer said that she supported the request for the matter to be held over until Mr Ramaano had confirmation from Mr Meyer.

Mr Jeffery said that the Committee should note Mr Maruwa’s resignation and also that it therefore could not take the matter further.

Mr Swart seconded.

The Committee unanimously adopted the report.

Mr I W Morake
The Chairperson informed the Committee that the request was for the withholding of remuneration.

Mr Jeffery pointed out that Paragraph 5 was key.
Chief
Mr Sibanyoni moved for the adoption of the report.

Mr Holomisa seconded.

The Committee unanimously adopted the report.

Mr T Masinga
Ms Schäefer moved for the adoption of the report.

Mr Jeffery seconded.

The Committee unanimously adopted the report.

General Matters of the Committee
Ms Schäefer asked when the Committee was going to consider the matter of the salary of the Deputy Public Protector (DPP).

The Chairperson said that he was of the opinion that the Public Protector (PP) was supposed to address the Committee on the matter and motivate. The difficulty was that the PP did not want to do this and the Committee could draw its own conclusions as to the reasons for this, the DPP felt that it was inappropriate for the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to do it and the Committee was opposed to the DPP doing it herself because it was not appropriate as one was not allowed to motivate for their own salary adjustment. 

Mr Jeffery said that it was not appropriate for the CEO to motivate before the Committee and the only person who could do this was the PP and the Committee should wait for her. The PP should come before the Committee to do this.

The Chairperson said that this would be communicated to the PP.

Mr Jeffery said that the Committee should also set aside a meeting for further deliberations on the Prevention and Combating of Trafficking in Persons Bill [B9 – 2010] during the last week of Committee meetings.

The Chairperson said that the DPP’s salary was determined by the House.

Mr Jeffery said that the Director General (DG) of the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development (DoJ&CD) as well as National Treasury should also be present.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting.



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