THE JUDICIAL COUNCIL headed by Supreme Court President Štefan Harabin elected 14 people to serve as judges on Slovakia's Disciplinary Court. But the venue for the election, in Snina in the easternmost part of Slovakia, has caused controversy.
More than 30 people had been nominated. Of the 14 elected by secret ballot, four were nominated by judicial councils, five by Slovakia’s parliament and five by Justice Minister Lucia Žitňanská.
The election in Snina was attended by only a third of the 33 nominated candidates, the SITA newswire reported. Several of the candidates proposed by parliament and the Justice Ministry complained that they had to pay their own travel expenses to Snina while those nominated by the judicial councils were technically there on a business trip and had their expenses paid by their courts, SITA wrote. Harabin did not comment on this issue, saying he does not govern the economic affairs of the courts.
Zuzana Wienk of the Fair-Play Alliance, a transparency watchdog group, attended the meeting and told the SITA newswire that the meeting, held in a resort restaurant, was “catastrophically undignified” and that the difficult accessibility as well as the inappropriate venue was an obstruction for candidates.
Harabin responded that the meeting was held in Snina to make the election more transparent. Justice Minister Lucia Žitňanská interpreted it as lack of respect and even malice toward the candidates, SITA wrote.
14. Mar 2011 at 0:00 | Compiled by Spectator staff