The judges' dilemma: bias

Being a judge no doubt is no easy job. It is surely not enviable for the loads of data that one must process before reaching a judgement- and the fact that sometimes you must pass a judgement that is against your own views to satisfy the provisions of the law.

What has come to the fore in the past week and this week is also that judges are constantly in the spotlight and some judges are beginning to be labelled for perceived bias. Is it possible though in the human sciences that there be no bias and could we argue as the Unions have done-also citing former Botswana Law Society Chief Motumise that certain judges-Kirby to be specific are likely to be Executive minded? Or are we merely battering confidence in our judiciary for no good reason?

To begin with, after the Court of Appeal dismissed their case, BOFEPUSU made a statement that declared they were disappointed at the judgement. What disappointed them most they said was that "in what by the court's admission was an intricate and complex case, only Kirby JP has written a judgment, to which the other judges have simply appended their signatures at the end". They go further to cite past trends where the same Court under the leadership of Justice Amissah, A.  "would in matters of national importance articulate the basis for their concurrence with a particular judgement" and that indeed such practice is common place across the world in jurisdictions such as those of the USA and South Africa.

Editor's Comment
Women in Politics caucus NGO, a welcome development

In the 2014 General Election, women who stood for parliamentary elections were a mere 17 out of a total of 192 aspirants, and sadly the number dropped to 11 out of 210 parliamentary aspirants in the 2019 General Election. Hopefully, registration of the Women in Politics Caucus will give women the necessary support to join politics. While things were slowly improving, women for a long time were at the receiving end as compared to their male...

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