Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Lenchwe upbeat about his Customary Court presidency

The president of the Customary Court of Appeal says he should be given only two years to turn around the Court of Appeal and give it a new look.

Speaking to The Sunday Standard, Kgosi Mothibe Lenchwe, a teacher by profession who was appointed the President of Customary Court of Appeal a month ago, said, “My plan is to transform the Customary Court of Appeal and take it to the next level.”

He added: “Judge me after two years whether I am making any progress or not.”

Lenchwe said although he has only a month in office, there are a number of things to be done as well as challenges that they are facing that affect the court.

He explained that “Customary Court of Appeal has being giving me some cases before I became the president then I developed an interest and hoped to be its president one day”.

Lenchwe said there are a good number of challenges that the court is facing that need urgent attention from the Ministry of Local Government through the Department of Tribal Administration.

He said his Court does not have a library where they can easily research on a particular case.

Another most important factor, Lenchwe said, is that the appointing ministry should have a separate budget that can be used to educate tribal authorities, especially chiefs or headman, to improve the quality and delivery of judgments.

He said shortage of manpower and transport also affect the running of his court.

“It is very important to meet with your stakeholders, like magistrates and High Court judges, probably annually, so that they know what we do and we know what they do,” he said.

Lenchwe said such kind of networking will also assist them to evaluate them selves whether are they on the right track or not.

On backlog of cases he said, “I hope that the court will be able to deal with the backlog in which quality judgment will be delivered.”

He maintains that the customary courts should not be abolished since they play a very important role in Setswana culture.

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The Telegraph September 30

Digital edition of The Telegraph, September 30, 2020.