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Legal guarantees of judicial independence

Niš, 26.10.2023.

The second lecture of the year, to the second generation of participants, as part of the training program Strengthening Capacities for Judicial Reform - southern Serbia, was held by a retired judge and president of the Ethics Committee of the High Council of the Judiciary, Mr. Omer Hadžiomerović.

In the lecture entitled Legal Guarantees of the Independence of the Judiciary, the re-election of judges in 2009, the public's lack of information about the developments in the judicial reform, the lack of legal culture and the occasional light criticism of the public as a kind of pressure on the work of the courts were discussed. Among other things, Mr. Hadžiomerović pointed out that:

- the problem of the unsuccessful re-election in 2009 was that the judiciary did not have a mechanism to recognize those who should not remain judges, and some judges were dismissed outside the law;

- problems in the judiciary are not of a personal nature but of a systemic nature, because the system produces people who work in the judiciary;

- the absence of appropriate criteria for evaluating the work of judges is illustrated by an example where the quality of the work of the judges of the Court of Appeal in Belgrade was measured by quantifying the number of judgments made without the existence of parameters that would determine the actual quality of those judgments;

- increasing the amount of fines does not contribute to the suppression of crime;

- taking into account all the circumstances of our country, we need guarantees of the independence of the judiciary, which are not within the European standards but are above those standards because our judiciary is more vulnerable.

The questions and comments of the participants were related to:

- the criminal offense of banning public commenting on invalid court proceedings, which was abolished in 2012;

- minimum fulfillment of standards when it comes to the reform of the Constitution in the field of justice;

- political influence on court presidents;

- lack of uniform judicial practice as a basis for the independence of the courts.

The lecture was realized with the support of the Open Society Foundation.


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