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Kiska sent letter to judges before the Judicial Council vote

THE RESULT of the November 25 selection of the 18th member of the Judicial Council will indicate what kind of judiciary judges they themselves want, President Andrej Kiska wrote in an open letter sent to the judges.

THE RESULT of the November 25 selection of the 18th member of the Judicial Council will indicate what kind of judiciary judges they themselves want, President Andrej Kiska wrote in an open letter sent to the judges.

“I believe that the voice and will of the majority of you, decent and honest judges, will be promoted,” the letter reads, as quoted by the TASR newswire.

The Judicial Council currently lacks one member. This is a result of the amendment to the constitution that came into force in September which divided the post of Supreme Court president and Judicial Council chair. Based on the valid rules, judges nominate nine members of the council, with the parliament, the government and the president appointing three members each.

In a vote held on November 25, judges across Slovakia will vote for their ninth representative in the body. The judges running for the post include: former Supreme Court president and ex-chair of the Judicial Council Štefan Harabin and judges Martin Bargel, Dušan Čimo and Lenka Praženková. The vote will take place between 14:00 and 24:00, with the results being announced on November 26, the SITA newswire wrote.

Kiska also stated in his letter that apart from meeting their professional tasks, all judges are obliged to strive for consistent public trust in exercising the powers entrusted to them.

“I’m aware that by far not all problems and shortcomings of judicial power can be resolved by judges themselves, but a gradual increase in the credibility of the system is also in your hands,” the president said, as quoted by TASR.

He went on to state that whether judges decide to take part in the vote or refrain from the selection process will also be viewed as an important signal, as it will indicate how serious they take their responsibility towards people.

Political scientist Grigorij Mesežnikov said the election will have a symbolic character and its result will reflect whether the Slovak judiciary “will follow the way of preserving the current state or, vice versa, the way of supporting reforms”, as reported by SITA.

Source: SITA

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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