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Judges want to change how judges are appointed

A committee of judges say that the changes are necessary to maintain the impartiality of the judiciary.

Image: Africa Studio via Shutterstock

A GROUP OF judges today made a submission to the Department of Justice that would overhaul the appointment procedure for judges.

The group, the Judicial Appointments Review Committee today made the submission, with Chief Justice Susan Denham saying that the changes were needed to maintain the impartiality of the legal system.

“Public confidence that justice will be administered fairly by persons of the highest quality and integrity is vitally important in maintaining the confidence of citizens in the State.

“The judicial appointments system needs to change to ensure this is so, and is seen to be so”.

Ireland is ranked fourth in a world-wide poll that ranked how independent the judiciary is seen.

However, the submission points out that the system of judicial appointment in Ireland is by now “demonstrably deficient”, that it fails to meet international
standards of best practice and “must be reformed if it is to achieve the objective of securing the selection of the very best candidates”.

The submission calls for an extension to the period that a solicitor or barrister must serve, says that diversity quotas should not inhibit appointment and calls for the establishment of a judicial council.

Read: Over 2,000 people have signed a petition calling for a judge to resign

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