- Published: June 7, 2019
Seminar on judicial ethics as a component of legal reform
On 28 and 29 May 2019, a two-day seminar on judicial ethics was held at the “Pavel Shatev” Academy of Judges and Public Prosecutors in Skopje. The event was organised by the Academy in partnership with the IRZ.
The seminar was opened by Dr. Pavlina Jankukovska from the Academy, who welcomed the participants on behalf of the Academy’s Director. The local IRZ representative, Natasha Andreevska, spoke on behalf of the IRZ.
This was followed by speeches by Fidancho Stoev, a former judge at the Supreme Court of North Macedonia, and by Dr. Pavlina Jankulovska, a public prosecutor at the Public Prosecutor’s Office in Bitola. Dr. Gerhard Kircher, former President of the Higher Regional Court in Oldenburg, was the German speaker.
The participants in the first day of the seminar were:
- The presidents of various courts,
- the heads of various public prosecutor’s offices and
- members of the Judicial and Public Prosecutors’ councils.
On the following day, employees of the courts and public prosecutor’s offices from all the judicial districts in the country attended the event.
The main focus of the seminar was on the theoretical and practical aspects of professional ethics, with an emphasis on the particular responsibility of representatives of the third state authority. The speeches each led on to lively discussions, which focussed above all on judicial independence and impartiality in accordance with article 6 of the ECHR.
The position of judges and their exposure to corruption was also discussed. In this respect, the participants came to the conclusion that the independence of the judiciary needs to be backed up by the executive authority and policy. This is particularly important because an unreliable justice system is considered to be an obstacle for the foreign investment that is urgently required in North Macedonia.
Judicial ethics are becoming increasingly significant in the context of the current judicial reform in North Macedonia. The event ties in with the previous activities of the IRZ in this area. It also supplements the advice given by the IRZ recently for the revision of the conditions for the qualification of future judges.