JSC laments lack of female judge candidates
North West Acting Judge President MM Leeuw will be the first female judge president if President Jacob Zuma confirms her nomination to the post by the Judicial Service Commission (JSC), JSC spokesperson Dumisa Ntsebeza said on Wednesday.
“If she is appointed, she will be the first female judge president in South Africa,” said Ntsebeza after the list for recommendations for judicial vacancies countrywide was released.
He said the commission was concerned about the lack of female candidates for these positions.
“I think it has reached the stage where extreme measures must be taken to ensure there is representation on all our ventures.”
There was a scarcity of women—black and white—in these positions.
However, the JSC would not merely appoint women just to fill transformation requirements; it would rather select another candidate or leave the post vacant if candidates did not meet the criteria for these life-long positions.
Meanwhile, it would not be a problem if President Jacob Zuma appointed the judge who acquitted him of rape to one of the top positions in the judiciary, the JSC said.
Gauteng Acting Deputy Judge President Willem van der Merwe made it on to the list of judges recommended for judicial posts around the country that Zuma must confirm.
“President Zuma is merely acting on the advice of the JSC ... he is just at the end of a process,” said Ntsebeza.
The president was not involved in the interviews or the nominations, which were conducted by secret ballot.
Nominations came from professional and individual bodies and went through a long process before a final list was drawn up.
Zuma was acquitted of rape in 2006.—Sapa.