Ministry of Justice bans children, cancels Youth and Family Court
The Ministry of Justice Courts and Administration has moved to ban children under the age of 19 from the Courts at Mulinu’u and its carpark areas.
In addition, the Ministry has also asked members of the public not to attend Court matters if they are not involved as they will not be allowed during the proceedings.
The Youth Court and Family Violence Court that mainly deals with under age persons and family relatives have also be cancelled until further notice.
The new rules were confirmed in a Public Notice posted outside the Court rooms and around the Ministry of Justice’s office.
“Youth Court and Family Violence Court sittings are cancelled and rescheduled to suitable dates next year,” stated the notices.
The dates scheduled for the proceedings in the Youth and Family Violence Court will be made in another public notice after consultation with senior District Court Judge, added the notices.
“In respect of all Courts and all matters inclusive of the Land & Titles Court, only parties and their legal representatives will be allowed into the Courtroom.
“This should be strictly enforced by Court staff and the Court orderlies (police).
“The general public is respectfully advised not to attend as they will be barred from the proceedings.”
Furthermore it stated, “under no circumstances are any persons under 19 years of age to be permitted onto the Courtroom premises or in the Courtroom vicinity including the carpark areas”.
“These are all areas under the control of the Ministry of Justice Courts and Administration.”
According to the notices media access to all Courts is not affected unless the Court for a particular case orders otherwise or the media person is under 19 years of age.
Outside the Courts, many people waited until the proceedings for their relatives especially those in custody are concluded until they are able to meet them outside Court.
At the Ministry’s carpark, there were still women seen in cars with their children inside.
Earlier this week, Judges issued orders during Court proceedings restricting members of the public from inside Courtrooms.