The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) has completed the first phase towards the introduction of the integrated electronic case management system with a new committee set to be constituted to oversee the implementation of the system as part of efforts to improve efficiency and attainment of world class justice.

The 2018 bar-bench judicial colloquium being hosted by the Zimbabwe Law Society and the JSCn has seen strong calls for collective efforts in ensuring a world class justice system and enhancing of access to justice.

Chief Justice Luke Malaba told delegates that commendable progress has been made in pursuit of legal reforms and revealed that the much-anticipated integrated electronic case management system will soon be operationalised with the first phase of the project having been completed.

“The committee which was spearheading that process recently submitted its report to me. I will shortly appoint another committee to oversee the implementation of the system,” he said.

Guest speaker former chief justice in the South Africa Constitutional Court Retired Chief Justice Sandile Ngcobo who hailed the country’s judiciary system said there is need to prioritise access to justice for the vulnerable members of society.

“Access to justice is a basic principle of the rule of law. In the absence of justice, people are unable to have their voices heard, exercise their rights or hold decision makers accountable,” he said.

Law Society of Zimbabwe president Mr Misheck Hogwe said there need to put in place user friendly and simplified rules of procedures in order to make justice more accessible to ordinary Zimbabweans.

“It is also apparent that while rules are important, they must be designed in such a way as to simplify court processes, thereby enhancing access to justice,” he said.

The colloquium running under the theme, “Enhancing Access to Justice through Law Reform,” will see participants deliberating on bridging the gap between the Constitution and the constitutional court rules, the development of a constitutional court act, the validation of the draft high court rules and a review of the legal practitioners act.