South Africa

More Tribulations than Trials?

Two significant amendments to the Uniform Rules of Court that were published on 31 May 2019 have come into operation on 1 July 2019. The amendments to the procedure of applying for summary judgment in terms of Rule 32, and the introduction of Rule 37A regarding judicial case management respectively are likely to affect all attorneys frequenting the High Courts of South Africa.


Amended Rule 32 summary judgment

The summary judgment procedure is designed to assist a plaintiff to obtain speedy judgment in claims based on certain causes of action. The granting of this remedy is extraordinary and based upon the supposition that the plaintiff’s claim is sound and the defendant’s defence is bad in law. The procedure was seemingly introduced in South Africa on the basis of its use in England and Scotland.

Environmental law in action: Jifa training course

When prominent global warming scientists hail a legal decision as a ‘watershed’ for climate change action, you know that judgment must, at the very least, make for good reading. But the judges attending last week’s environmental law training offered by the Judicial Institute for Africa (Jifa), took one step further – they met, listened to and discussed environmental law issues with the very author of that decision, Australian judge Brian Preston, chief judge of the New South Wales land and environment court.

Read judgment 

For some of the judges attending last week’s environmental law training, it was a first opportunity to meet new colleagues from other jurisdictions in the Southern African Development Community countries; others enjoyed meeting up with friends already encountered in previous training offered by the Judicial Institute for Africa (Jifa).

How a star liquidator fell from his perch

The fortunes of one of South Africa’s most prominent and successful liquidators, Enver Motala, have suddenly and rapidly declined, with his business ethics and behaviour called into question. Now the Supreme Court of Appeal has made it clear: his “disgraceful and dishonest” conduct means that its judges will not overturn the decision by the Master of the High Court to remove him from the panel of liquidators appointed to settle the affairs of companies in liquidation.

Read the judgment on SAFLII

FOR ordinary people across Africa, shaking their heads at the scale of corruption and ethical decline on the continent, the story of South Africa’s former liquidator Enver Motala, once known as Enver Dawood, is like an old morality play, showing the struggle between good and evil and offering a moral lesson.


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