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Government unveils road map for judicial reform

Shahudha Mohamed
02 May 2019, MVT 13:09
Speaker of parliament Qasim Ibrahim (R), Minister of Defence Mariya Ahmed Didi and Attorney General Ibrahim Riffath in attendance during the ceremony held to inaugurate the road map for judicial reform. PHOTO: NISHAN ALI / MIHAARU
Shahudha Mohamed
02 May 2019, MVT 13:09

Chief Justice Dr Ahmed Abdulla Didi, on Wednesday night, inaugurated a road map for judicial reform spread over 20 major focus areas.

The inauguration ceremony held in Islamic Centre was attended by the Speaker of Parliament Qasim Ibrahim, various ministers and many judges of law courts.

According to Judicial Administrator Dr Abdulla Nazeer, the road map was compiled based on the discussions between members during the Judicial Conference held in February, advice of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and reports and research compiled on the judiciary of Maldives by foreign organisations.

Some areas of focus addressed in the road map include reforming the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) , amending laws, revising the policies of appointing and dismissing judges, creating a system through which judges can be held responsible and establishing a system allowing the public to file complaints.

Moreover, the road map comprises of creating a system to grant promotions to judges, strengthen the implementation of sentences, establishing superior courts in every city, as well as strengthening the judicial administration policies.

Ensuring the financial independence of judges, improving judges' quality of work, reforming the judicial case management system, introducing an e-filing system, increasing the use of technology and providing educational and technical opportunities for judges are also highlighted in the road map.

Additionally, the road map states that reforming the JSC by amending the constitution and allowing the commission to operate independently without corruption is one of the key pillars of building a strong judiciary.

The road map also states the importance of amending laws to better fit the current situation of the country and reforming the judicial framework to ease the road to reaching justice.

One very important matter highlighted in the road map includes ensuring that the judiciary is free of all acts of corruption, and amending the disciplinary measures of all judicial staff to fit international standards.

The road map also emphasised on allocating a portion of the state's budget for the judiciary, as is done internationally, and bringing about amendments allowing the judiciary to handle their own expenditure.

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