Transparency International Georgia (TI Georgia) has joined several parliamentary opposition parties and the ombudswoman and has refused to participate in the screening of candidates for judges to the country’s Supreme Court in the state legislature.
The Georgian parliament has plans to begin procedures for a vote on nine candidates for the Georgian Supreme Court who were presented by the country’s High Council of Justice (HCJ) on June 17, 2021.
Head of TI Georgia Eka Gigauri stated earlier today that the election of new judges to the country’s Supreme Court must be suspended until the implementation of major judiciary reforms, in line with the April 19 EU-mediated agreement.
.@Transparency_GE will not participate in selection of judges either as part of a coalition or individually. We have too many questions about this process. We demand to carry out a reform first and then elect the Supreme Court judges — @katgigauri https://t.co/WINlngFdJf— Transparency Int'l GE (@Transparency_GE) July 2, 2021
Gigauri says that the ruling Georgian Dream party, which is one of the signatories to the EU-mediated agreement, ‘ignores’ the calls of the international community to pause the election of new judges.
The United National Movement opposition party MP Roman Gotsiridze has stated that if the parliament will not suspend the process of the election of new judges to the Supreme Court, it will cause large protests in the country.
The ruling party, which supports the election of new judges, says that the Supreme Court is in ‘desperate need’ of new judges because of ‘loads of work’ and that the state legislature adopted major court amendments prior to the EU-mediated agreement which were approved by the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission.