Judge Patrick Jaji has died. The Eastern Cape judge is the latest high profile South African to succumb to Covid-19. He passed away in a hospital on Sunday.
“The effects of COVID-19 pandemic have now reached the doorsteps of the Judiciary in a very real and saddening way. Judge Jali was a dedicated bastion of the Constitution and rule of law. His untimely death robs us of the opportunity to experience his future contribution to the Judiciary,” Judge President of the Eastern Cape Division of the High Court Selby Mbenenge says in a statement issued on behalf of the Judiciary.
The Chief Justice’s Office has sent its condolences to his family and friends, saying his loss will be deeply felt by his colleagues and the staff in the Eastern Cape Division of the High Court.
Judge Jali was permanently appointed to the High Court in 2017. He had worked as an attorney from 1996-2010.
His death comes as South Africa’s infection rate continues to climb.
He also joins several high profile South Africans who have succumbed to the disease. These include, the , former KwaDukuza mayor and ANC spokesperson Ricardo Mthembu and Langeberg mayor Henry Jansen.
The Gauteng, and , as well as the Mpumalanga Public Works, Roads and Transport MEC, are among South Africans who are currently recuperating from the disease.
The country currently has more than 200 000 infections and over 4 000 deaths.