Coalition for an Independent and Transparent Judiciary is addressing the issue of election of the new Chief Justice, which has already garnered growing public interest. The current Chief Justice’s term is up in February, 2015.
According to the Constitution of Georgia, a candidate for the position of Chief Justice is selected by the President and is approved by Parliament. The nominee is appointed, upon more than half of the MPs support for him/her. According to the legislation, if the Parliament does not support the President’s nominee, the President may not propose the same candidate again, he must offer the Parliament a new nominee. The current legislation does not specify the time for the President’s nomination and the Parliament’s hearing and decision-making regarding the candidate.
According to the current legislation, selection of the candidate and nomination to the Parliament is the President’s exclusive authority. However, given the issue’s importance, it is essential that the processes of the selection, nomination and appointment are transparent and inclusive. This must be ensured both by the President and the Parliament.
It is important that public has access to the criteria for selecting the Chief Justice, as well as the selection procedure. Due to high public interest towards the issue and the role of the Chief Justice in the ongoing reform of the Judiciary, it is important to consider the following issues:
We call on all sides to the process to implement the nomination and appointment of the Chief Justice in accordance with democratic principles. This will be of paramount importance for the effective continuation and implementation of the ongoing reforms in the judicial system. The Coalition expresses readiness to help with the improvement and transparency of this process.
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