IN QUOTES | Justice minister Ronald Lamola's address at the Mpumalanga high court opening

08 November 2019 - 12:49 By Cebelihle Bhengu
Ronald Lamola says the new Mpumalanga high court 'resembles the ethos and the vision of the ANC'.
Ronald Lamola says the new Mpumalanga high court 'resembles the ethos and the vision of the ANC'.
Image: Gallo Images/Sowetan/ Kabelo Mokoena

Justice and correctional services minister Ronald Lamola addressed the official opening of the Mpumalanga high court, which started functioning in May this year.

Lamola said while the court provides relief for Mpumalanga residents who will no longer be required to take long trips to the Pretoria high court, there is also a looming change for practitioners who will soon be required to adapt to the digitisation of courts.

Here's his address in five telling quotes:

Symbol of equality

“The opening of this court resembles the ethos and the vision of the ANC. The people of this province will have access to the justice system, wherever they are, even in their homes. This court must also reflect the demographics of our country. It must not be  exclusive for white males and commercial law. We must see black practitioners doing commercial law.”

Balancing gender scales

"Women practitioners across the country, we have heard their cry. We are in the process of putting preferential policies in place which will enable us to ensure  women practitioners receive and play a role in this justice system."

New blood

“For us as government, it is very important that we groom a new generation of legal practitioners in the mould of George Bizos and many others. We also call upon local government and municipalities to use black practitioners in this province. This court should be a theatre and dance floor for breeding this new generation.”

Digitisation cannot be avoided 

“This court is a state-of-the-art facility which is victim-friendly and will ensure that victims of crime are able to access the justice system without fear. It is also part of a course that will ensure we are introducing the modern technology we need. I hope practitioners will come to the party because I know lawyers are mostly paper heavy and don't want to use technology. We can no longer avoid it.”

Money matters 

"President Cyril Ramaphosa recently raised R363bn from the investment conference. This is very important because for us to have rule of law, we also have to have social and economic stability. It has been proven many times by rating agencies that the courts are important  indicators of the rule of law and investment destination."