The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) is set to introduce virtual court sessions as a measure to ensure that the COVID-19 induced lockdown doesn’t disrupt the delivery of justice.
“Courts could not afford to lag behind in harnessing the potential of ICT in ensuring that access to justice is not disrupted”
“To this end, plans to introduce virtual court sittings are at an advanced stage. The process involves presentation of submissions by litigants and parties to disputes without them being required to be physically present at court”
Chief Justice Luke Malaba via The Zimbabwean
The JSC has been said to have entered in memoranda of understanding with corporate partners to assist with the setting virtual courts across the country. According to a report by The Zimbabwean, there is already one in operation at Harare Magistrates’ Court which is connected to Harare Remand Prison.
“A pilot run of the equipment was successfully done towards the end of 2020,”Chief Justice Luke Malaba
Last year the government announced that it was going to be adopting GlueVP as its official video-conferencing application. There was even a whole launch event that was held for it by the ICT Ministry.
The government chose to adopt GlueVP because pranksters decided to disrupt some govt department ZOOM meetings. The most notable was a Met Department forum that was temporarily shut down because someone posted adult content.
After its launch event, we didn’t hear much from GlueVP and its partnership with the govt. One wonders if the system that the JSC is setting up involves it or like many govt partnerships nothing ever goes beyond the initial furore.