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Supreme Council of Justice starts selection process of judges

By Tea Mariamidze
Friday, December 4
The Chair of the Supreme Court of Georgia, Nino Gvenetadze says that the Supreme Council of Justice has started the selection of Appeal Judges.

According to Gvenetadze, there are 61 vacant seats in total and the selection process consists of two stages.

Gvenetadze noted that members of several Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), representatives of the Public Defender and journalists will be able to attend the process, however they will not be allowed to record any interviews.

“The first phase has already passed. This is the collection of documentation about specific candidates; the second stage is an interview with the candidates, which will be transparent and open for NGOs, Public Defender representatives and the media,” said Gvenetadze.

It should be noted that the Public Defender of Georgia, Ucha Nanuashvili, presented a summary of the activities of individual judges to the Supreme Court and the High Council of Justice. He hopes that the recommendations and reports prepared over the preceding years will assist the High Council of Justice to make a fair decision.

“An independent and impartial judiciary can be primarily guaranteed by the selection of the kind of personnel which fully meet the high standards of a judge. The main axis of impeded function of the judiciary is a judge and therefore it is necessary for the state that we ensure the effective selection of personnel,” reads the statement of the Ombudsman.

Several NGOs have also released their recommendations about the selection of judges in the joint statement.

The third sector believes that the process is not transparent and objective enough. They say that the judges who have lots of unsolved cases on their record are among the candidates.

The organizations call upon the Supreme Council to appoint only highly qualified and decent candidates, whose activities have never caused any doubts as to their competency.

According to Eka Tsimakuridze, a lawyer of the Young Lawyers Association of Georgia (GYLA), they demand from the Supreme Council to justify the reasons for approving or rejecting the candidates.

The NGOs also noted that the schedule of the interviews with the judge candidates was published only the previous day and the list of candidates did not contain their biographies, which is a serious shortcoming.

“We hope that our recommendations will be considered during the process of selecting the judges,” the statement of the NGOs reads.