Court stays open despite power cut


A COURT is continuing to hear cases despite the loss of its power supply caused by an electrical fault for more than two weeks now.
Boroko District Court Senior Magistrate Rosie Johnson told The National that she and other magistrates had to hear cases in rooms without any air-condition facilities.
They had to open the windows and doors to let fresh air in and post guards around the court room.
It is believed the fault which happened more than two weeks ago was caused by a blown fuse.
“In fact some of our people are sick from the (lack of) ventilation. It was quite bad but we’ve managed,” she said.
“Despite the power problem, we were able to deal with the public.
“We catered for the counter service and continued to sit in those very bad conditions.
“(There is) no air-con and you have to open the doors and getting the security officers to be standing at the doors while we are hearing cases.
“We are also mindful of their right to a speedy trial.
“If we say we have no power, the computers are not working, it’s useless. It’s to the inconvenience of those in custody. So we’ve been giving priority to custody matters.”
Last Tuesday, contractors set up a temporary power supply with the use of a generator.
She said they were waiting for PNG Power to turn of the power supply to the court building.
“This building is very old and you would expect those kind of problems,” she said.
“We can have an upgrade but we may also need to upgrade the building too.
“The main thing is that we come to court and we serve the public. That’s our mandate. We have to maintain that.
“I’m really proud to say that despite what was happening we got the job done and we go home satisfied that we have no one left at the counter.”