Office of the Judiciary

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    Query: This is a general response to all ‘complaints’ against different magistrates in different regions and how to go about making a formal complaint.

    Response: The Office of the Judiciary, wishes to inform the nation at large; that as per the Judicial Service Commission Act No. 18 of 1995; under the heading:
    ‘Functions of the Judicial Service Commission’: 4 (1) (c) ‘conduct disciplinary inquiries into the conduct of persons holding or acting in judicial offices, and receive and investigate complaints from the members of the public concerning the conduct of such persons or the administration of justice at superior court level’;

    Any person legitimately aggrieved by a Judges’ conduct; with a vested interest therein; may through the Judicial Service Commission lay a formal charge of misconduct or complaint against such Judge.

    Similarly, it goes without saying that through the Magistrates Act No. 3 of 2003, under Regulation 20 (1) (2) (3) thereof:
    20 (1) “A member of the public (hereinafter referred to as the complainant) may, by written declaration under oath or affirmation, lodge a complaint with Commission {Magistrates} on the alleged improper conduct of a magistrate or alleged maladministration of justice in a lower court:
    20 (2) A declaration referred to sub-regulation (1) must at least contain the following particulars:
    (a) the date and time of the incident to which the complaint relates;
    (b) the nature of the matter in question;
    (c) the names of the persons involved and of any witnesses;
    (d) the grounds on which the complainant is of the opinion that an investigation is justified; and
    (e) all other relevant information known to the complainant.
    20 (3) On receipt of a complaint under sub-regulation (1), the Commission –
    (a) must –
    (i) acknowledge receipt thereof in writing to the complainant; and
    (ii) deal with the complaint in such manner as it may consider appropriate;”

    *Ms Yvette Hüsselmann, Chief Public Relations Officer, Office of the Judiciary, E-mail: cpro@jud.gov.na

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