Concern about CJ's instruction that heads of court should 'see and approve' all judgments before delivery

A storm broke over the head of Zimbabwe's Chief Justice Luke Malaba when he issued a memo to heads of court on 16 July, 2020. Among others, the memo instructed that before a judgment was delivered by any judge, 'it should be seen and approved by the head of court'. The instruction led to a major furore, with critics at home and abroad saying it infringed judicial independence. They asked what would happen if a head of court disagreed with and declined to 'approve' a judgment that a member of the judiciary was about to deliver. This lead to statements of support for judicial independence being published on social media, along with messages expressing alarm about the situation. Subsequently, on 21 July, the Chief Justice issued a revised memo. On that day, via the Judicial Service Commission, there was also a reply to a letter of concern sent to the Chief Justice by the Law Society of Zimbabwe.