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Justice Weiner: for her corruption is a red rag

  • Sharise
Justice Sharise Weiner, who made the shortlist of 14 candidates to succeed Thuli Madonsela as public protector - at the time of writing the incumbent had not been named - feels it is important for women to be recognised.
by SUZANNE BELLING | Aug 17, 2016

HOTOGRAPH: HOWARD SACKSTEIN

 
“Even in the Jewish community, most of the boards of organisations comprise mainly men,” she told SA Jewish Report.

She was nominated for the position of public protector by Group One Chambers of Advocates in Sandown Village, who stated: “Her integrity is, and has always been, beyond reproach.”

Mother and grandmother, Justice Weiner lives by a code of ethics that she says, “is core on Jewish values. These were inculcated in me by my late parents, especially my mother.”

The moral and ethical Jewish teachings, as entrenched in the Constitution, were one of the reasons for her accepting her appointment as a judge. She has served on the High Court in Johannesburg since 2011 and prior to that was an advocate for 33 years.

The ethics of the Constitution stress “diligence, honesty and truth, which are part of Jewish values”, she says.

A founding member of Lawyers for Human Rights, she emphasises the Constitutional values where injustice and cruelty are not tolerated.

“I have compared the Constitution to some of our Jewish teachings, including the Bill of Rights, where everybody should be equal.”

Referring to other sections of the Constitution, she highlighted just administration, labour relations, human dignity, family values, saying that poverty and riches are not recognised by judges.

She admires outgoing Public Protector Thuli Madonsela for doing the right thing and holding people to account.

Should Justice Weiner be appointed as public protector, she would continue “that sort of important work in this country. I have zero tolerance for corruption,” she said.

South Africa has lost R30 billion a year through corruption. “If this were kept in check, there would be less poverty and less crime, which are contributing factors to the decline in the country.”

Her nomination letter stated that she was honoured by the Johannesburg Society of Advocates for her service in the cause of advocacy training, serving for 10 years from 2000 as the chairman of the Advocacy Training Committee of the General Council of the Bar of South Africa, and she still serves on the executive of that committee.

Advocacy training is essential in preparing young advocates for legal practice at the Bar and she “possesses a great passion for skills transfer to young members of the profession and gives expression to that passion through her tireless work as an advocacy trainer”.

She ran advocacy workshops for lawyers in several overseas countries as well.

Her “exceptional management and time management skills” permit her many important professional and other interests and activities “in the interests of justice and in the service of the community at large.

“Justice Weiner has always exhibited a strong sense of justice, compassion, balance and fairness in her work and her life generally. She has an enviable sense of duty and dedication to the causes she pursues,” Philip Ginsberg SC said on behalf of Group One Chambers of Advocates.

In 2012, Weiner founded “Warm the World”, a charity that donates blankets to the needy and empowers women by paying them for knitting and sewing the blankets - the charity has donated some 50 000 blankets.

Born and educated in Johannesburg, she obtained BA and LL B degrees at Wits.

Other voluntary activities include a department in ORT SA, work for Afrika Tikkun and serving as a trustee for The Tomorrow Trust, which supports vulnerable children.

 

2 Comments

  1. 2 Sharon Suttner 18 Aug

    Thuli Madonsela set the bar high and was the one ray of hope that there was something good happening in South Africa
    We really need a strong woman who can follow in her footsteps
    Justice Weiner sounds like that kind of woman
  2. 1 Ian Goddard 21 Aug
    The noble values attributed to Justice Weiner are to be admired.  They are vital for the future well-being of this country.
    Thuli Madonsela's term of office has been a breath of fresh air in the stench of the nation's corruption and graft.
    The calibre and fortitude of Justice Weiner comes across as upholding like values.

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