A new magistrate, Shelly Zvenyika, has been sworn in as the country’s 250th magistrate.
Zvenyika took oath of office last Friday at a ceremony presided over by the acting chief magistrate Hlekani Mwayera.
Zvenyika was born in 1981, attended primary and secondary education in Harare and attained a Bachelor of Law honours degree at the University of Zimbabwe.
She was attached to the clerk of court civil and criminal division at Marondera magistrates’ court.
In her address at the ceremony, Mwayera urged judicial officers to uphold traditional values of honesty, integrity, impartiality, respect and hard work when performing their duties.
Mwayera said: “Failure to observe the sacrosanct principles will no doubt lead not only to the downfall of the magistrate but taint and bring into disrepute the entire judiciary.”
Mwayera also warned judicial officers against corrupt practices.
“Today the issue of corruption and especially judicial corruption is receiving closer scrutiny by all. A judicial officer worth his or her salt must be above it so as to be able to successfully weed society of the malignant disease – corruption,” she said.
Mwayera said corruption would not be tolerated in the judiciary.
Recently, magistrates and their supporting staff were moved from the Public Service Commission into the Judiciary Service Commission, a move Mwayera said she hoped would improve conditions of service.
“It is our hope that the historic move of magistrates to the Judiciary Service Commission coupled with the right attitude will see the improvement of conditions of service of judicial officers and thus enhance the independence and dignity of the lower judiciary,” Mwayera said.
Harare provincial magistrate Mishrod Guvamombe chronicled Zvenyika’s brief history before she took oath of office.