Stunning rape revelation Prof Reddi in support of Mogoeng
BRAVE SURVIVOR: Magistrate encourages others not to remain silent
CHIEF Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng had as much a duty as the heads of other state organs to ensure the creation of a truly equal South Africa, UKZN’s dean of law Professor Managay Reddi said yesterday.
Opening a conference of women judges and officers in Durban yesterday, Reddi came out in support of Mogoeng, who is the subject of a complaint to the Judicial Service Commission by Advocate Paul Hoffman SC.
Hoffman believes Mogoeng should be impeached, among other things, because of hard-hitting comments he made at an Advocates for Transformation dinner in Cape Town about transformation in the profession.
Mogoeng was a guest speaker at yesterday’s conference.
Reddi was critical of the slow pace of transformation, saying that this was why the “elated cheers” of the majority of South African women during the dawn of democracy had turned into “whimpers of pain, despite every constitutional right still being in force and effect”.
The founding of a truly equal society in which all persons, including women, were able to meaningfully enjoy the rights conferred by the bill of rights was not possible without transformation, Reddi said.
“Yet, shockingly in some sections of South Africa today, discussions around ‘transformation’ cause such egregious consternation that persons from those sections of our society feel compelled to resort to such drastic steps as calling for the impeachment of the chief justice for publicly discussing matters of transformation.”
The current composition of the judiciary was hardly reflective of a new order that was “in conspicuous contrast” to its composition under apartheid, Reddi said.
To expect Mogoeng — who because of his position as the country’s top judge was answerable for the slow pace of transformation in the judiciary — to refrain from discussing the challenges to transformation was “to emasculate him in the performance of his constitutionally mandated functions”, she said.
“This inherent conservatism and refusal by some culprits of apartheid in the legal profession to share in the responsibility for transformation is one of the biggest challenges to transformation and undeniably accounts for the slow pace of transformation in our country, especially in the legal profession and the judiciary.”
Reddi urged those gathered at the conference “who recognise that if it had not been for the transformative dictates of our Constitution, we would not be where we are today”, to raise their voices and speak out “against those who are attempting to subvert the transformation project”.
— Witness Reporter. A MAGISTRATE caused a conference of women judges to gasp when she stood up yesterday and told Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng that she had been a victim of rape.
Noluthando Ndamase (37) has given permission for her name and picture to be published.
Mogoeng was addressing a gathering of mostly women at the conference of the South African Chapter of the International Association of Women Judges at UKZN.
He had finished his speech and was taking questions when Ndamase made the disclosure and pointed out to Mogoeng that all South Africans, even judicial officers, were affected by crime.
Mogoeng sympathised with Ndamase and told her that he and his family had also been the victims of crime while he was judge president in the North West province.
Ndamase later told Weekend Witness that she had been raped, robbed and abducted during the ordeal in Phuthaditjhaba in the Free State in August last year.
She said she had decided to speak out at the conference to encourage other victims not to remain silent.
“I wanted to raise the eyebrows of the people in influential positions. It will empower others who suffered the same so that they know they are not alone and they can overcome the situation regardless,” she said.
Ndamase, who was transferred to Bloemfontein after the incident, said her attacker had wielded a hand-made knife. “I screamed but he ordered me not to cry or he would kill me.
“He raped me and thereafter took me to my car before dumping me in the boot and driving off. He also took money [about R500] that was in my purse,” she said.
“I was left in the boot the entire day and was found the following evening. I heard footsteps and then banged on the boot until someone asked if there was anybody inside,” said Ndamase, who hails from Mdantsane in the Eastern Cape.
Ndamase, who had been a magistrate for two years at Phuthaditjaba, said the perpetrator had yet to be arrested.
Ndamase, the mother of an eightyear-old, credited colleagues for helping her through the ordeal.
Although Ndamase presides over robbery and rape cases, she says she does not allow her ordeal to cloud her judgments.
“I understand that the alleged rapist who appears before me is not the one who raped me. I make decisions based on the facts that are before the court,” Ndamase said.
Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng addresses delegates at the International Association of Women Judges conference at the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Howard College campus in Durban yesterday.
Bloemfontein magistrate Noluthando Ndamase who was raped, robbed and kidnapped at her house while working as a magistrate in Phuthaditjhaba in August last year.