Judge Nhatitima was chosen as president of the SADC Administrative Tribunal this week, during an online plenary meeting of the members of the tribunal. He will serve as the tribunal’s president for a year. The other members of the tribunal are Justice Ivy Kamanga from Malawi’s high court, Justice Mbutfo Mamba who serves on the high court in Eswatini, Justice Regina Rweyemamu who is a now-retired judge of Tanzania’s high court, Zambia’s appeal court Justice Fulgency Chisanga and Justice Sanji Monageng from Botswana, someone who has extensive experience on domestic and international courts.

The SADC Administrative Tribunal has a very particular brief: its task is to resolve labour disputes between the SADC secretariat or any of its institutions in an employer capacity on the one hand, and employees of the same on the other.

According to the tribunal’s registrar, Nemaduthsingh Juddoo, these disputes could include matters ‘relating to the contract of employment or to the terms of appointment’. The tribunal sits as a court of first instance and also has an appeals level involving a panel of three judges.

Parties bringing cases to the tribunal may do so in any of the official languages of SADC. Based in Gaborone, Botswana, it is a relatively new body and it is important that its work should be wider known.