Committee Reports on Salaries, Allowances & Benefits for Judges & Magistrates; Provisional Suspension of Magistrate

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Justice and Correctional Services

08 March 2016
Chairperson: Dr M Motshekga (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Justice and Correctional Services Portfolio Committee considered three reports and accepted all of them.

The first the report of the Committee on Justice on the Draft Notice and Schedule determining the rate, with effect form 1 April 2015, at which salaries, allowances and benefits were payable to Constitutional Court judges and judges annually, dated 8 March 2016. Having considered the request for approval by Parliament, the Committee recommended that the House approve the Notice and Schedule.

The second report considered was the report of the Committee on the Draft Notice and Schedule determining the rate at which salaries, allowances and benefits were payable to magistrates annually, dated 8 March 2016. The Committee recommended that the House approve the Notice and Schedule.

The third report was the report of the Committee on the provisional suspension of Mr L Zantsi, an aspirant magistrate at Laingsburg, dated 8 March 2016. The report was accepted and the Committee recommended that the National Assembly confirm Mr Zantsi’s provisional suspension from office.

Meeting report

The Chairperson brought the attention of the Committee to three reports which needed the Committee’s approval.

The first report considered was the report of the Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Services on the Draft Notice and Schedule determining the rate, with effect form 1 April 2015, at which salaries, allowances and benefits are payable to Constitutional Court judges and judges annually, dated 8 March 2016. The Committee considered the request for approval by Parliament of the Draft Notice and Schedule submitted in terms of section 2(4) of the Judges Remuneration and Conditions of Employment Act, 2001 (Act No 47 of 2001), submitted on 25 February 2016. The Draft Notice and Schedule determined the rate at which salaries are payable to Constitutional Court judges and judges annually, and would have effect from 1 April 2015. The Members were in agreement and the Committee recommended that the House approve the Notice and Schedule.

The second report considered was the report of the Portfolio Committee on the Draft Notice and Schedule determining the rate at which salaries, allowances and benefits are payable to magistrates annually, dated 8 March 2016. The rate was effective from 1 April 2015. Parliament requested that the Portfolio Committee approve the Draft Notice and Schedule submitted in terms of section 12(3) of the Magistrates Act, 1993 (Act No 90 of 1993). The Members considered the request and the Committee recommended that the House approve the Notice and Schedule.

The third report was the report of the Portfolio Committee on the provisional suspension of Mr L Zantsi, an aspirant magistrate at Laingsburg, dated 8 March 2016. The report contained information concerning Mr Zantsi and the facts surrounding his position as an aspirant magistrate and the provisional suspension.

Mr Zantsi was the acting magistrate at Laingsburg from 3 May 2010 until he was appointed as aspirant magistrate in the vacant post of magistrate at Laingsburg on 4 November 2013. The Magistrates Commission had agreed to extend Mr Zantsi’s probation period by six months, or until the investigation had been concluded. The Magistrates Commission then decided to charge Mr Zantsi with 14 charges of misconduct upon the completion of the preliminary investigation. The report contained details of the charges, which ranged from reporting for duty while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, to uttering abusive words towards a female member of the South African Police Service. 

The Magistrates Commission had heard Mr Zantsi’s response and recommended that Mr Zantsi be provisionally suspended from office in terms of section 13(3)(a) of the Magistrates Act, pending an investigation into his fitness to hold office. The Minister had accepted the recommendation and provisionally suspended Mr Zantsi from office. The Magistrates Commission’s report and the Minister’s recommendation were accepted by the Members - this was reflected in the report of the Portfolio Committee on the provisional suspension of Mr Zantsi. The Members agreed to adopt the report and recommended that the National Assembly confirm Mr Zantsi’s provisional suspension from office.

The Chairperson confirmed that the three reports had been accepted by members of the Committee.

The meeting was adjourned.

 

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