Top judge raps registrars

Top judge raps registrars

MASERU – HIGH Court judge, Tšeliso Monaphathi, has sent a stern warning to senior court officials who he says spend work hours basking on heaters.
Justice Monaphathi said registrars at the High Court spend their time gallivanting instead of working.

The judge made the remarks in court on Tuesday after a registrar failed to find a record of a criminal case before him.

He was presiding over a case in which 11 Qacha’s Nek men are accused of killing a policeman in 2005.

When the suspects appeared in court the judge said he did not know where to start because he did not have the record.

Frustrated, Justice Monaphathi then directed his fury at registrars whom he said were lazy.

He said registrars have to be in the court 30 minutes before the court proceedings but “now it has become a culture and tendency for the registrars to stay in their offices basking on heaters”.

“When there is a case which needs clarification one will find out that a registrar is not in court but is spending the whole day in his or her office,” Justice Monaphathi said.

He said they spend their time drinking tea in the office when there is so much work to do.

He said the registrars have to keep all documents in order but they only start scrambling around when the case resumes. The judge complained that some registrars only start their research when the case is about to start.

Most, he said, don’t know when the case started and what decisions were made during the trial.

Justice Monaphathi said the only time registrars become active is during events like memorial services or when a minister visits the Palace of Justice.
“They will be seen in their beautiful attire like suits going up and down”.
“Yet when it comes to their daily job they are nowhere to be found,” the judge said. He said that registrars should remember that they are hired to work and not attend events.

Itumeleng Khoete

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