Ministry tells judges to prove their allegations, leave politics out

The Slovak Justice Ministry has issued a sharply worded statement in response to an independent initiative calling for higher standards in the judiciary which was launched this week by judges.

The Slovak Justice Ministry has issued a sharply worded statement in response to an independent initiative calling for higher standards in the judiciary which was launched this week by judges.

The ministry statement called on the spokesman the "For Open Justice" initiative, Supreme Court Justice Miroslav Gavalec, and his associates to present evidence for their statements and stop putting politics into justice.

“The Penal Code strictly penalises any interference into the decision-making process of courts and therefore Justice Gavalec, who should be a legal expert, is required to report suspected criminal activities to law enforcement authorities,” spokesman for the Justice Ministry Michal Jurči told the SITA newswire on Monday, March 29.

Launching a personal attack on Gavalec himself, Jurči said that if the judge wants to talk about a lack of transparency in competition for jobs, he should start with himself. "After working for three-and-a-half years at a district court, he was relocated directly to the Supreme Court on January 1, 2005. Shortly before that, he had unsuccessfully applied for the position of a regional court judge. Such a case has not occurred in Slovakia since 1918; it is a rarity, which does not have much in common with transparency," Jurči said.

The initiative has stated that the most visible current problem in the judiciary is the abuse of disciplinary proceedings against judges who have objected to recent changes in the judiciary; they said this threatens the independence of judicial power the most.

For more information, please see: Group of judges launches campaign to tackle justice issues.

Source: SITA

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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