11 new judges appointed JSC secretary, Mr Walter Chikwana, confirmed the new appointments saying the commission is now preparing for the swearing-in ceremony.

Fidelis Munyoro-Chief Court Reporter

PRESIDENT Mnangagwa has appointed 10 new judges to the High Court bench and one for the Administrative Court on the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission, following public interviews of 39 candidates conducted by the JSC last month.

The new judges will be sworn in on Monday next week.

In addition to the new judges, Masvingo-based High Court Judge, Justice Garainesu Mawadze, has been appointed Deputy Judge president.

He will deputise Judge president, Justice Mary Zimba-Dube, the head of the High Court.

Justice Mawadze and the newly appointed judges are expected to take their judicial oaths before Chief Justice Luke Malaba on Monday, during a ceremony to be held at the Constitutional Court in Harare.

 The new High Court judges are: Ms Faith Mushure, Mr Ngoni Nduna, Mr Regis Demure, Ms Philipa Phillips, Mr Gibson Mandaza, Mr Joel Mambara, Mr Naison Chivayo, Mrs Vivian Ndlovu, Mr Sijabuliso Siziba and Mr Mpokiseng Dube. 

Mr Maxwell Kaitano is the new Administrative Court judge.

JSC secretary, Mr Walter Chikwana, confirmed the new appointments saying the commission is now preparing for the swearing-in ceremony.

 “I can confirm the appointments of the new judges by the President on the recommendation of the JSC,” he said.

The new judges, at both the High Court and Administrative Court, replace judges who died, resigned or were removed from office in terms of the Constitution.

The vacancy at the Administrative Court arose following the retirement of Justice Herbert Mandeya. 

The JSC has the constitutional mandate to conduct public interviews for prospective judges about to join the bench for the first time, although promotions to the Supreme Court and Constitutional Court no longer call for interviews since these are based on how the judges have performed.

After the interviews are done, the commission sends a list of recommended judges to the President, who may assent to the names or ask the JSC to submit a fresh set of names. 

According to the Constitution, a person qualifies to be appointed as a Judge of the High Court if they are at least 40 years of age and have been qualified to practise as a legal practitioner in Zimbabwe or any country, with the same common law as in Zimbabwe, for at least 10 years. 

Although now rarely used, judges of a court with unlimited jurisdiction in civil or criminal matters, in which the common law is Roman-Dutch or English, can also be considered for appointment.

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