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Judiciary Independent: Chief Justice

Judiciary Independent: Chief Justice
August 28
20:17 2018


Chief Justice Anthony Gates is hoping that on the eve of the general elec­tion, the Judiciary is not brought into political debate.

Justice Gates comments come after it was brought to his attention that a SODEL­PA provisional candidate Pio Tabaiwalu shared posts on social media claiming that a judge’s contract was not renewed because he ruled in favour of a media organisation.

He was also made aware of increasing comments on social media and blogsites about judges and magistrates.

“The Judiciary is independent, and that includes, independent of the Government and each judge of each other,” the Chief Justice said.

“Judges, Masters and Magistrates make up their own minds on case issues and on trial judgments.

“They may make mistakes, honest mis­takes, which can be corrected on appeal.Pio Tabaiwalu (1)

“Some cases have what might be termed a political angle because the case deals with highly contested issues, current view points, or union matters given wider public­ity.

“The Judiciary will and must strive, to focus only on the facts and legal principles and on nothing else whatever the personal sympathies the individual judicial officer may have.

“Finally, in two recent instances, it has been posted that judicial officers “were sacked i.e. contract not renewed”.

“It was suggested the Government had in­terfered and ordered these sackings. That source is unreliable.

“The judicial officers have not been “sacked”. They continue to administer jus­tice.

“In cases judges have found against ‘the authorities’. One of the cases is on appeal.

“The matters will be processed by the courts to arrive at what is the correct de­termination of the law, which might be in an agreement with the initial decision.

“Those judges, magistrates or appeal judg­es do so by themselves, without outside ad­vice, suggestion or hindrance.

“They should be allowed to get on with their work, without politicisation of their processes.” Edited by Percy Kean

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