Judicial Reform Strategy Is Comprehensive Plan Spanning 7 Years- Minister

Politics » DOMESTIC | January 21, 2015, Wednesday // 11:35
Bulgaria: Judicial Reform Strategy Is Comprehensive Plan Spanning 7 Years- Minister Bulgaria's caretaker Justice Minister Hristo Ivanov, photo by BGNES

Bulgaria’s Justice Minister Hristo Ivanov has presented an updated strategy for judicial reform, stressing the need for parliamentary debate on the document.

Speaking Wednesday in Parliament, he made clear that the strategy was a comprehensive document for the seven years to come that was not focused solely on the Supreme Judicial Council (VSS) but took into account all problems plaguing the judiciary.

“We are aware of the fact that some of the processes of change and stabilization of the judicial system will be gradual. All of the measures concerning the bodies in charge of criminal proceedings are based on a concept paper on criminal policy,” Ivanov declared, as cited by the BGNES news agency.

Ivanov claimed that the strategy was an update of the one from 2010, adding that 5 governments had worked on it and it was meant to be a starting point for achieving consensus on the measures which had to be adopted in the sphere.

He underscored that the little time that was left until January 28, when the next report of the European Commission on Bulgaria under the Co-operation and Verification Mechanism (CVM) was due, had not prevented the authorities from submitting the strategy to Parliament and not just to the Council of Ministers, which would have been the easier option.

Bulgaria’s Justice Minister noted that Parliament had the final say on the judicial reform strategy, adding that it was to provide the basis for the continuing debate on the topic.

As regards proposed changes to the structure of VSS, he said that a discussion on the possibility for constitutional amendments concerning VSS was essential as it was clear that the entity had been inefficient over the past few years.

He called for establishing a separate parliamentary committee over the possible restructuring of VSS.

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Tags: Justice Minister, Hristo Ivanov, judicial reform, judicial reform strategy, Co-operation and Verification Mechanism (CVM), Supreme Judicial Council, VSS
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