JUSTICE

JusMin tells CSM prosecutors Ordinance on modification of OUG 7 will have five items. CSM’s Savonea: I received the text amending OUG 7; it brings substantial clarifications in areas of concern

Vice-President of the CSM (Supreme Council of Magistrates) announces that the members of the Section for prosecutors of the Council on Friday had a meeting with the Minister of Justice, Tudorel Toader, who told them that ordinance on modification of OUG 7 will have five items.

“Today, 12.30, we were invited by the Minister of Justice, who told us that he will issue an Ordinance that will modify Ordinance 7. The Section for prosecutors told him that it supports the decision of the CSM plenum to abrogate all the provisions regarding, among other things, the Public Ministry. Mr Minister said he will send a version of the Emergency Ordinance to the CSM today. We do not hold a copy of this Ordinance. It was just a discussion,” informed Solomon, at the meeting of the Section for prosecutors of the CSM.

He also specified that, according to Toader, he will change the article regarding the mandates back to its form and thus give up the provisions according to which the judges who were prosecutors can be appointed in offices at the Prosecutor’s Office.

“Mr Minister told us that it (the Ordinance – editor’s note) will have five items, which means that he will change the article regarding the mandates back to its initial version, with mandates to be decided by the Section for prosecutors, and that he will give up article 54 saying that the judges who were prosecutors can be appointed in top jobs at the Prosecutor’s Office, with the approval to be given by the Section for prosecutors. Moreover, he said he will give up the provisions regarding the good reputation and other two matters – the one referring to the unitary pay, as well as some technical correlations regarding the Judicial inspection. The Minister told us that he will not change the other articles. We told him that the judicial system’s concerns are larger than Ordinance 7,” said Nicolae Solomon. A

 

CSM’s Savonea: I received the text amending OUG 7; it brings substantial clarifications in areas of concern

 

Chair of the Supreme Council of Magistrates (CSM) Lia Savonea said on Friday that she received from the Ministry of Justice the text of a government ordinance amending emergency ordinance OUG 7, adding that the new piece of legislation brings “some substantial clarifications in areas that generated a state of concern and conflict.”

“I have received from the Ministry of Justice the draft Emergency Ordinance that amends several of the texts of OUG 7/2019. They are few but very important. They reinstate the previous form of Article 54 in Law 303/2004 that the high-ranking prosecutors will be appointed from among prosecutors only and only taking into account the opinion of the Prosecution Section, without the need for an opinion of the plenum. Article 57 (7), index 1 prohibiting appointments by reassignments at the top of the prosecutorial offices is being singled out for repeal. Also repealed is the provision that judges and prosecutors may be expelled form magistracy for failing to live up to good reputation. Also reinstated is the previous version of the text covering pay to IT specialists, while a transitional text providing for reassignment to senior positions at prosecutorial offices is being repealed. The draft has been sent to courts and prosecutors’ offices, which are expected to issue their opinions, while we will issue a positive or negative opinion next week in a plenary session,” Savonea said at a news conference.

Responding to a question, Savonea stated that the ordinance amending OUG 7 brings some “substantial” clarifications, “precisely in the areas that have generated a state of concern and conflict.”

 

Magistrates protesting before Justice Place; prosecutor calls situation serious

 

In the meantime, dozens of judges and prosecutors protested Friday on the steps of the Justice Palace in Bucharest, where the Bucharest Court of Appeals is located, to voice their dissatisfaction with controversial emergency ordinance 7 amending the justice legislation.

The magistrates requested the repeal of the ordinance and voiced disagreement with the government’s decision to pass legislative measures in the field of justice without a public consultation.

“In general, we have a reserve obligation. This time we felt the situation was serious, as atypical as it is for us, we came out publicly to show that we were very worried. I cannot speak on behalf of all my colleagues here, but in principle it is about legislating without public consultation on criminal laws, without consulting all actors involved and specialists, using an emergency ordinance without a justification for the urgency. Changes were made in justice legislation that had not been discussed before and that had just been disused in Parliament and modified shortly before. There are other issues that have been brought before the Constitutional Court, which will rule on the matter,” said Raluca Muntean, prosecutor with the Bucharest District 2 Prosecutor’s Office.

The protest was quiet and lasted about half an hour, with the magistrates then retreating to the applause of passers-by.

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