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This article is taken from the July 2000 Phatlalatsa newsletter

 

Efficient and Effective Justice via e-Justice

Matthew Smith has been working with the Department of Justice to develop a programme logframe and roll-out plan, as well as designing an M&E system, for the e-Justice programme launched in June.

e-Justice

The Department of Justice’s e-Justice Programme will radically transform the justice system as we know it South Africa. It is at the cutting edge of technology, a multi-year programme designed to support fundamental reforms necessary to establish a more fair, accessible and efficient system of justice in South Africa.

The role of S&Tin the programme has been to facilitate the Project Cycle Management workshop at which the four projects that make up e-Justice developed their implementation plans. Furthermore, S&T have been facilitating the development of the financing proposal for the major funders, namely the European Commission and the Royal Netherlands Embassy. This proposal includes an outline of a monitoring and evaluation system for the programme, which S&T have designed.

The programme

The e-Justice Programme has set itself the task of re-engineering the court process by utilising appropriate enabling technology, including e-Commerce and Knowledge Management. But it is not just about technology. A significant proportion of the programme will be spent giving people the skills to use the technology efficiently. The aim is not to "automate inefficiencies", but rather to provide an effective department that plays a meaningful role in combating crime and upholding the Constitution.

The proposed interventions by the Department of Justice will be supporting the following government priority objectives:

  • Improved access to court case files for all parties involved
  • Effective case registration and mailing system in the courts established and made operational
  • Effective court management information system established and operationalised
  • Access to information database for all users of the justice system established and operationalised
  • Effective planning and management of the Court Administration Development programme ensured
  • The significant improvement of the Guardians Fund and Maintenance Grant system to ensure that the Justice System no longer marginalises children and women.

 

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