Magistrate stops court over lost dog

LAWYERS in Polokwane have accused a Seshego magistrate of putting the life of a dog before justice.

This is after magistrate A Harrison allegedly stopped court proceedings on Friday after receiving a call that her dog had gone missing.

Harrison cried hysterically and the court was adjourned.

Now some lawyers, who did not want to be identified, want the magistrate from KwaZulu-Natal who was seconded to Seshego recently to be removed.

One lawyer said the prosecutor was sent to look for the magistrate in her chambers and found her sobbing bitterly.

The prosecutor was allegedly told that a call had come informing the magistrate that her dog had gone missing.

"The court had to come to a standstill because the magistrate was crying for her lost dog," said a lawyer.

"This shows that the life of a dog is more valuable than that of a person."

He said some of the cases that were supposed to be heard on that day had to be set aside because of time constraints when the court finally resumed in the afternoon.

The lawyers accused Harrison of incompetence and demanded that she be replaced.

Recently, Harrison fined a motorist R30000 for negligent driving after colliding with another motorist. No one was injured in the accident.

Head of the Seshego magistrate's office Sidette Kotze said: "The lawyers must not complain through the media but through my office.

"I am unhappy about the R30000 fine but I cannot do anything because the matter is already set for appeal."

Harrison declined to comment.