The number of female magistrates in the country are steadily increasing, and nearly half of them are now female. Out of the 207 candidates that were hired by the Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, 105 of them are women.

These appointments will mean that 47.8% of South Africa’s magistry will be female.

Speaking to IOL, Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, Ronald Lamola, said that there were there were 758 women working as magistrates in the country by June 2019. “This equates to an increase of 166.9% in the number of female magistrates from December 1998 to June 2019,” the Department said. “More than half of our country’s population is female and therefore it is important that our bench reflects this.”

More than 600 candidates were short-listed for the 249 available posts between March and April and the recommendations were submitted to Lamola by the Magistrate’s Commission in September.

In some cases, the Commission recommended that the posts be re-advertsied, while others were filled by transferring magistrates.

While 210 were recommended, 207 were appointed by Lamola.

“A fully transformed judiciary is a constitutional imperative. The new appointments will go a long way in further transforming our magistracy to reflect the demographics of our country,” the Department said. “We have made significant progress in terms of gender transformation over the last two decades.”

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