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Lupane Magistrates Court complete

by Staff reporter
13 Jun 2022 at 06:44hrs | Views
CONSTRUCTION of new Lupane Magistrates Court complex, one of the signature infrastructure projects being implemented in Matabeleland North province, is complete and the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) expects to officially open it next month.

The Lupane court is located near the Grain Marketing Board depot north of Lupane Centre.

The premises comprise of the main building which has two courtrooms, chambers and several offices as well as a well-ventilated prison holding cells building, waiting shed and ablution facilities.

The cells have internal ablution and shower facilities.

Its completion follows that of the Welshman Mabhena Government Complex where Government departments have since been allocated offices to pave way for relocation of civil servants from Bulawayo, where they have been operating from.

Updating journalists at the Hwange Magistrates' Courts last Friday as JSC held an open day to celebrate 12 years of existence since its commissioning in 2012, JSC deputy secretary Mr Sithembinkosi Msipha commended Treasury for supporting development projects the commission is undertaking countrywide.

"Another interesting aspect is that we are finalising building a new court in Lupane which is going to be opened in July. TelOne has finished installing what needs to be installed in order to make sure that teleconferencing and internet facilities are there.

"What's left is for us to bring the hardware which are the computers and software for the Integrated Electronic Case Management System (IECMS). For Matabeleland North, that is a milestone," said Mr Msipha.

Lupane is Matabeleland North provincial capital and all along, the Magistrates' Court was housed at the District Development Co-ordinator's offices.

The new courthouse becomes the third modern JSC structure in Matabeleland North after Victoria Falls and Binga courts.

The Hwange Magistrates Court, which is bigger and built some years back, has been refurbished.

Tsholotsho got a new courtroom more than 10 years ago but it is smaller than the new structures JSC is building countrywide.

Mr Msipha said a lot of resources were spent on constructing the Lupane Court complex although he could not give figures.

"It did not come cheap but we are happy Treasury has been very supportive. We have not had challenges asking for money from the fiscus which is why we are recording this high rate of roll-out," he said.

Mr Msipha said Lupane Magistrates' Court is going to be transformative in a big way as it is a bigger complex.

"We have an opportunity to put a regional court in Lupane because we have beautiful courtrooms and chambers there. It's going to bring a change that is necessary in Lupane in terms of development in the judiciary," he said.

The regional court is housed at the Hwange Magistrates Courts where the High Court also sits on circuit.

Part of the Lupane courtyard has been paved while grounds are also being greened.

Mr Msipha said the High Court will not relocate to Lupane but its premises will be built in due course for the province to have a permanent High Court.

Turning to refurbishments at the Hwange Magistrates Courts, Mr Msipha said the new look premises, both inside and outside, create an ambience that enhances confidence in the justice system.

Roof tiles were falling off because of baboons hunting for termites and they have been replaced and a razor wire has been erected to prevent baboons from entering the complex.

Floor tiles and doors that had also been damaged by termites have been replaced.

Chambers have been refurbished and all furniture, both in chambers and court rooms has been replaced. The victim friendly and virtual court equipment including TV screens, cameras and control computers are now in place.

Water supply to the premises has been improved and the grounds re-greened.

Mr Msipha said the Hwange courthouse has been modernised.

These developments come as Government is building courts across country in order to bring services close to communities.

The JSC apart from Lupane, is also constructing Gwanda Magistrates Court and Epworth Magistrates Courts in Harare among several other projects.

Plans are also underway to build courts in Nkulumane and Cowdray Park suburbs in Bulawayo.

Source - The Chronicle