Johannesburg – Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng and Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo have urged judicial officers and the broader South African public to show more compassion and generosity and support the needy during the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis.
In a joint media statement on Saturday, Mogoeng and Zondo said they both realised that the lockdown was likely to cause severe financial hardship to millions of South African households and families.
“Therefore, it is absolutely necessary for all South Africans who are able to do so to make whatever contribution they can to the alleviation of these hardships in any way they consider most effective,” the statement said.
One way of doing so would be to identify and assist families in dire need of basic necessities or financial assistance without contravening the lockdown regulations. Some of the practical steps that could be taken included sending money to identified families through electronic transfer, such as eWallet, CashSend etc, or, once again in strict compliance with the lockdown regulations, arranging to meet at a shop with a representative of an identified family and buying basic necessities for them.
“Another way would be to pay money into the Solidarity Fund from one’s reserves or to commit a percentage of one’s salary to that fund or a combination of the above, as one’s personal circumstances may permit.”
Mogoeng and Zondo had, separately and independently of each other, identified needy or vulnerable families that they were assisting and would continue to assist during the lockdown and beyond if the need persisted.
Judges and magistrates did not owe their positions to any central command structure that could take decisions relating to their salaries on their behalf and instruct them on what sacrifices to make in relation thereto. They were completely independent in that respect.
“The chief justice, therefore, encourages fellow judicial officers and the broader South African public to show more compassion and generosity, particularly at such a time as this,” the statement said.
African News Agency (ANA)
By ANA Reporter