19 February 2013

Namibia: Commission to Address Shortage of Magistrates

Windhoek — The Magistrate's Commission is working to address the current shortage of magistrates in regions other than the Khomas Region. Most magistrates are said to prefer working in the Khomas Region.

Last week New Era reported a serious shortage of magistrates in the Karas regional courts that has resulted in an enormous backlog of criminal and civil cases and overcrowded cells in the region.

The deputy chairperson of the Magistrate's Commission Gabes Nepaya yesterday said the Khomas Region was not experiencing the same problem, since most magistrates prefer to work in the region, whether they are practising or when they are about to finish their legal studies.

Nepaya noted that the Karas and Caprivi regions are the most affected by the shortage. He says the commission is working around the clock to fill all vacant positions by March 01, 2013.

People arrested in the various towns and other localities in the Karas Region are unlikely to leave police holding cells any time soon due to the lack of resident magistrates to deal with cases on time.

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