Significant steps have been taken under the “Third Wave” of the judicial reform in terms of improving system for disciplinary liability of judges.
Based on the requirements set forth in the EU-Georgia Association Agreement, the judicial branch of the government developed the 5-year strategy for judicial reform and the 2-year Action Plan for the implementation of the Strategy for the first time in Georgia’s history.
Present report describes and assesses the two novelties introduced in the so-called “third wave” of the judiciary reform: the electronic system of case distribution and the system for disciplinary liability of judges as the office of Independent Inspector has been put into action.
On February 27, 2019, High Council of Justice (HCoJ) granted the appeal of Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI) to abolish its administrative act and obligate the person responsible for public information to provide requested information to IDFI.
Anti-Corruption Network of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD-ACN) published its second progress report on anticorruption recommendations issued for Georgia in its Fourth Round Monitoring Report. Of the 22 total recommendations, none of them showed significant progress, 17 were assessed as having some progress, and four of them indicated lack of progress, while no rating was granted to the remaining one.
On December 24th, 2018, High Council of Justice (HCoJ) of Georgia nominated ten candidates to the country’s Supreme Court. The nomination caused controversy among the representatives of civil society organizations as the nominated judges were either leaders or close associates of a group of judges (so called “clan”) exercising an informal power over Georgia’s judiciary.
December 2018, after the inauguration of the President of Georgia, marks also a commencement date for the new constitutional amendments. As a result of these changes, Prosecutor’s Office of Georgia was separated from the Ministry of Justice and became a fully independent agency. The head of the institution is the Prosecutor General, while independence, transparency, and effectiveness of the system are guaranteed by the Prosecutorial Council.
Coalition for and Independent and Transparent Judiciary submitted recommendations regarding criteria and procedures for the selection of the Supreme Court justices to the Speaker of the Parliament of Georgia, Chair of the Fourth Wave Judicial Reform Working Group.
The report prepared by IDFI and EMC analyzes implementation of the activities of the Judicial Strategy and Action Plan (developed based on the requirements of EU-Georgia association agenda) which deal with the most compelling and pressing issues of the judicial system reform.
European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) has published its opinion on the new provisions on the prosecutorial council in the draft organic law on the Prosecutor’s Office. The opinion briefly assessed the provisions in the draft law that were prepared for the purposes of harmonizing the law on Prosecutor’s Office with the new edition of the Constitution.