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Courts to get a facelift

Public Works and Infrastructure Minister Patricia de Lille, said her department has set aside more than R260 million for the repair and maintenance of court buildings across the country.

Addressing the media after meeting with Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng, Minister De Lille said the state of the courts has a negative impact on the justice system.

“The justice system must be able to operate effectively in decent courts,” she stressed.

The total budget for repairs and refurbishment for the Deparment of Justice totals R260 million, of which R229 million has been allocated to repair and refurbish 105 courts.

Minister De Lille noted that the Department of Justice has also allocated an additional R531 million for repairs and refurbishments from its own budget.

The Chief Justice welcomed the commitment from Public Works and Infrastructure to upgrade the buildings, saying the state of court buildings affected the administration of justice. He said some of the buildings are not suitable to be used as courts.

Chief Justice Mogoeng said going forward, senior Public Works officials must avail themselves for meetings to discuss building maintenance.

“The justice system is highly compromised by the poor maintenance of buildings. Power outages affect court cases. It is time that we buy and own these buildings,” the Chief Justice said.

The Public Works Minister and her deputy Noxolo Kiviet are expected to work with 200 regional court heads, 15 district heads and 11 regional managers from the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure to ensure smooth implementation of the plan.  SAnews.gov.za