The messenger logo

Secretary of Supreme Council of Justice says that he has right to participate in Appeal Judges contest

By Tea Mariamidze
Thursday, December 17
The Secretary of the Supreme Council of Justice and a candidate for the position of the Court of Appeals Judge, Levan Murusidze, said the government and the opposition have united against the court. Murusidze made this statement after meeting representatives of the diplomatic corps accredited to Georgia.

According to him, the recent stir about his candidacy for the post of the Appeals judge will halt the progress made in terms of the independence of the judiciary.

Murusidze believes that the criticism towards him about several high-profile cases is unfair and he has the right to participate in the election process of the Appeals Judges.

It should be noted that that the Supreme Council of Justice has started the selection of the Appeal Judges. There are 61 vacant seats in total, and the selection process consists of two stages. The Council of Justice completed interviews with the judges on December 15 and asked Murusidze several questions about his verdicts over several high-profile cases.

The Secretary of the Supreme Council said that the criticism about his verdicts and towards the Council itself from the majority and minority is outrageous.

"Both the government and the opposition have suspiciously united against the court. They say some judges have no right to take part in the selection process of the Court of Appeal because they have dealt with specific cases. It is categorically and fundamentally unacceptable and will not help what has been done in recent years in terms of the independence of the judiciary,” he stated.

According to him, his only demand is a peaceful environment for the selection process to be held in so that the Council members are allowed to make choices without any pressure.

“The Council members should not be influenced either by the government nor the opposition, or any non-governmental sector,” added Murusidze.

The candidate hopes that his colleagues, who are the members of the Supreme Council, will vote for him. However he doubts that the Chair of the Supreme Court, Nino Gvenetadze, will support him.

“I can count on the Council member judges; we have been working together for two years and we have stood together against the challenges facing the Court,” he stated.

Murusidze is the judge who gave verdicts over several specific and well-known cases such as those of Sulkhan Molashvili, Sandro Girgvliani and Giorgi Mikiashvili.

Almost every NGO has said that Murusidze’s verdicts under the United National Movement government caused concern as to his motives or competence.

The NGOs stated that the international assessments of Murusidze’s previous verdicts for notorious murder and torture cases were universally negative.