Parliamentary briefing cancelled due to robbery at Office of the Chief Justice

Parliamentary briefing cancelled due to robbery at Office of the Chief Justice

Parliament's portfolio committee on justice has postponed a planned briefing by the Office of the Chief Justice, which was burgled at the weekend.

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The chairman of the committee, the African National Congress's Mathole Motshekga, said the meeting was postponed at the request of the office of Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng because of the break-in early on Saturday.


"Due to the robbery at the weekend at the Office of the Chief Justice, the committee felt the request is not unwarranted and agree to the request for a postponement," Motshekga said in a statement.


Mogoeng's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Earlier, Democratic Alliance justice spokeswoman Glynnis Breytenbach said committee members had only been informed via test message that the co-operation of the department could not be secured and that therefore all meetings of the committee for the rest of the week had been cancelled.


The committee was scheduled to be briefed by the Office of theChief Justice and Judicial Administration on its annual budget and performance plan on Thursday morning.


Breytenbach has expressed dismay at the cancellation.

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"It seems that some on the justice committee would prefer to stick their heads in the sand rather than urgently discuss the deeply troubling break-in at the office of the Chief Justice, which can only be viewed as an attack on the judiciary."


Breytenbach wrote Motshekga earlier this week to demand that the briefing be attended by the ministers of justice, police and state security so that they could answers questions on the burglary at Mogoeng's office in Midrand.


The break-in happened in the early hours of Saturday and saw thieves make off with 15 computers containing sensitive information about Constitutional Court judges and officials.


It came a day after the Constitutional Court handed down a ruling directed at resolving the social grant crisis, which a full bench laid at the door of Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini.


Police said on Wednesday that they had arrested three men in connection with the crime.

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