Bloemfontein - The Bloemfontein High Court has set aside the shortlisting proceedings of the magistrates commission for vacancies in the Free State and therefore the appointments of magistrates already made by the minister of justice.
According to the Helen Suzman Foundation (HSF), which appeared in the proceedings as amicus curiae, the court held that the commission displayed a total disregard for legislation, regulations, their own shortlisting processes and the rights of whites to at least be considered during the shortlisting process.
Judgment was handed down last week, the HSF said on Tuesday.
The application was brought by acting magistrate and head of office of Petrusburg Magistrate's Court, Richard Lawrence, whose shortlisting for a permanent position was overlooked by the magistrates commission.
"It was clear from the record of the private deliberations of the magistrates commission that race was the determining factor in the shortlisting process. In particular, the record revealed astonishing statements such as, 'Anything you need, except white,' made by the chairperson of the magistrates commission. This resulted in no male or female white candidates being considered for shortlisting for any of the magisterial vacancies available," said the HSF.