A new judge has been chosen to oversee the trial of five men accused of murdering former Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa in 2014.
Judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng will take the place of Judge Tshifhiwa Maumela when the trial recommences on 17th July.
Earlier, President Cyril Ramaphosa sent suspension letters to Judge Maumela and Nomonde Mngqibisa-Thusi as they had not delivered several reserved judgments within a reasonable time.
This action was taken following a recommendation by the Judicial Service Commission.
There have been multiple delays in the proceedings against the five accused men who allegedly shot the goalkeeper.
Judge Maumela’s health has also played a role, leading to the most recent adjournment because the judge was unavailable for an extended period.
Zikhona Ndlebe, the spokesperson for the judicial watchdog group Judges Matter, states that the trial will have to start anew, and witnesses will need to testify again before the new judge.
This is necessary for the new judge to independently review all the presented evidence and ensure fairness in the matter.
Considering that the newly appointed Judge Mokgoatlheng is retired, it implies that he should have sufficient time to expedite the case.
Additionally, he is an experienced judge who has dealt with high-profile cases before retiring.
Although this will cause further delays, it is not entirely negative.