New Byo magistrates’ courts to improve access to justice
The establishment of magistrates’ courts in Bulawayo’s Cowdray Park suburb will reduce the distance travelled by residents to access judicial services.
The city is currently serviced by the Tredgold and West Commonage magistrates’ courts.
The Judicial Services Commission (JSC) has been allocated land by the local authority to establish two magistrates’ courts in the sprawling suburb.
Speaking during the 3355th full council meeting, Wednesday, the mayor said Cowdray Park was a fast-growing suburb and such a high impact development project would benefit residents in surrounding areas.
“I would like to commend the decision made by this Committee to embrace high impact projects. The Magistrate’s Court will change the lives of the people of Bulawayo by reducing the distance they are going to travel to access justice,” Cllr Mguni said.
According to the latest council minutes, Acting Director of Town Planning Wisdom Siziba reported to the Committee that Council had resolved to sell a stand to JSC to establish a Magistrate’s Court.
“Council has resolved to sell Stand 26559 Cowdray Park measuring 1974m² as depicted on diagram TPA 9785 to the Judicial Service Commission to establish a Magistrate’s Court in Cowdray Park,” the minutes read.
“Upon receipt of offer of the stand the JSC indicated that the stand was too small to accommodate all essential facilities and buildings and they, therefore, requested for additional land to the stand that would enable them to accommodate all the essential facilities. However, they indicated that the siting of the stand was acceptable to them as it was not abutting residential stands but was within a commercial center.”
The minutes highlighted that it had been thus proposed that the JSC be offered additional land adjacent to Stand 26559 Cowdray Park which JSC had already been offered.
“This piece of land was to be consolidated with stand 26559 Cowdray Park. The combined area now measured 5670m2 in extent and was considered adequate to meet their needs. The proposal had been circulated to municipal departments and relevant service organisations and several comments and conditions should be noted,” the minutes read.
“ZESA’s general servitude covering the property shall be observed and the stand was not title surveyed and the survey costs were to be borne by the applicant. Any development on the stand should be in accordance with the approved plans and relevant Council by-laws.”