“We have achieved consensus on all key issues” – the Speaker, Irakli Kobakhidze summed up the 4th wave of the judicial reform

10 Jun 2019
“We have achieved consensus on all key issues” – the Speaker, Irakli Kobakhidze summed up the 4th wave of the judicial reform

We have achieved consensus on all key issues – on the one hand, quality of the bill, and on the other hand, consensus in the working group and we are glad to see our work on the 4th wave successfully accomplished”, - the Speaker stated at the briefing.

He summed up the process and touched upon the fundamental changes – at the resuming meeting of all three Governmental branches, diplomatic corps and NGOs, every judicial reform related issues have been finalized. The bills on the disciplinary proceedings, High School of Justice and High Council of Justice have been developed. 

As to the disciplinary proceedings, the new regulations have been outlined in details ensuring improvement of the process. We have prescribed the types of disciplinary misconduct, regulated the disciplinary proceeding process, outlined the obligation of substantiation of the decision at all stages which was not ensured under the law. We have clearly stipulated the evidence standard and in case of crime signs, the Inspectors’ Board has been assigned to dispatch the case to the Prosecutor’s Office”.

The crime definition has been specified and the principle of inadmissibility of the reprimand due to inaccurate explanations and the concept of the informal misconduct have been outlined, the statute of limitation has been reduced from 5 to 3 years according to the CoE recommendation and the reprimands and imposition rules have been regulated.

As we know, the scope of the changes is quite a large and let me note that the working group has achieved consensus on all regulations. It was one of the controversial issues. The group encountered the dissent on disciplinary issues at the initial stage but we managed to achieve the process with full agreement”.

The interesting discussions have been held on fundamental changes to the High School of Justice. “One of the recommendations envisaged the high probability quality for appointment of the readers of the School and thus, respective regulations have been introduced to the law, namely the readers are appointed on the basis of the Council forecast for the respective year. We have also defined the amount of the scholarship for the new readers and extended the academic period in the School”.

The positions also were different on the person/agency to accept the readers to the School.

Pursuant to the current regulation, it is the High Council of Justice and various parties concerned recommended replacing it with the School. Despite our different position, as appeared it was one of the most acceptable option for the consensus and hence, today we have made the political decision including in Majority format to assign the School appointing the readers”.

Significant changes have been implemented regarding the High Council of Justice.

According to the Speaker, the group has established the obligation of substantiation the decision on appointment of the judge.

New regulations have been introduced regarding the publicity of the sittings of the Council and the principle of instancing has been adhered to. The changes also apply to the wider range of the conflict of interests.

These are the fundamental changes implemented regarding the High Council of Justice. In this case we have also achieved consensus on all key issues – on the one hand, quality of the bill, and on the other hand, consensus in the working group and we are glad to see our work on the 4th wave successfully accomplished. What we believed to be impossible at the beginning appeared to be absolutely feasible. I would like to thank the working group members for their engagement and constructive attitude which guaranteed the result we enjoy now”.