31.10.2023

Topics discussed by the HCoJ in October

In October 2023 four meetings were announced by the High Council of Justice, two out of which were held (started about 4 hours late), and two – postponed.

Main Findings

  • The High Council of Justice made all decisions unanimously, without any dissenting opinion/questions, despite the fact that after almost 2 years, the HCoJ is performing its activities with its full composition;
  • The HCoJ did not publish information on postponing the session on the website in advance, within a reasonable time frame;
  • Information on holding some sessions was published with violation of the Organic Law – just a day prior, instead of not less than 3 days. 

18th of October 2023

Initially, holding the session was planned on 29th of September, but after postponing, was finally held on 18th of September.  
Total 13 minutes were spent on discussing the topics. 
Nino Kadagidze, Head of the High Council of Justice and the Supreme court, Levan Murusidze, a judge member of the HCoJ and Goga Kikilashvili, newly elected non-judge member of the HCoJ did not attend the meeting. 

Agenda: 

  1. Letters from the Head of LEPL Department of Common Courts;
  2. Letter from the Head of Tetritskaro district court;
  3. Topics related to the High School of Justice;
  4. On determining the composition of chambers/colleges in some district (city) and appellate courts;
  5. Organizational topics.

Main topics/decision discussed during the session:

  • The first topic was related to the letter from the Head of LEPL Department of Common Courts, according to which the rehabilitation works to the court building is agreed within the frameworks of Ambrolauri municipality action plan. As the representative of the Common Courts mentioned, two buildings (old garage and bathroom) shall be demolished to carry out mentioned works. The property is owned by the government. Therefore, the Department of the Common Courts addressed the requests on approval for demolition to the HCoJ, as the institution implementing the state control. 
    All the members of the HCoJ unanimously approved the request for demolition of mentioned buildings.
  • One more letter was reviewed within the frames of the first topic, according to which, Telavi district court addressed a letter to the Department of the Common Courts with the information on the damaged roof of the jury room by the heavy rain, which required repairing. As the topic was not included in the action plan, the plan needed to be amended.  All the members of the HCoJ unanimously approved making changes to the action plan.
  • The third letter within the first topic was related to the 14th of August 2015 Decree of the Head of the Common Courts on the Committee for writing off the Common Courts property from its balance. The Committee discussed removal of the specific transport means from the Common Courts’ balance and transferring them to the Property Management Agency.  All attending members of the HCoJ unanimously consented to the decree.
  • Review of the second topic of the agenda was postponed.
  • The third topic of the agenda was on dismissing Goga Kikilashvili, member of the independent council of the High Scholl of Justice from exercising his authority, following his election as a non-judge member of the HCoJ by the Parliament.
  • The fourth and fifth topics were removed from the agenda, as according to the HCoJ secretary, there is nothing to discuss in their regard. 

24th of October 2023

Total 40 minutes were spent on discussing the topics. 
Nino Kadagidze, Head of the High Council of Justice and the Supreme court and Tamar Gvamichava, non-judge member of the HCoJ did not attend the meeting. 

Agenda: 

  1. Letters from the Head of LEPL Department of Common Courts;
  2. Letter from the Head of Tetritskaro district court;
  3. On the amendment to some normative acts;
  4. Draft decree on electing members of the Prosecutor's Council;
  5. On determining the composition of chambers/colleges in some district (city) and appellate courts;
  6. Organizational topics.

Main topics/decision discussed during the session:

  • The first topic on the agenda was related to the changes to 2023 state budged caused by the increase of several expenses, including significant increase of translation expenses. Expenses increased by 650 000 in total. All members if the HCoJ unanimously approved the changes.
  • The next topic on the agenda was related to the letter from the Head of Tetritskaro district court, according to which, changes to the staff list was requested. More particularly, current staff list of Tetritskaro district court does not have Chancellery and Citizens reception department included. The Chairman request creation of such department within the list, with one specialist and one department head. This amendment will not change the staff list. The court has 10 officers, and the number will remain the same, however, a separate department will be created, with the department head (salary amount 2662 Gel), and specialist (salary (1452).  
  • The Council members noted that approving the request is reorganization by its nature, therefore, the HCoJ members postponed discussion of the topic, to discuss it with the court Chairman and make better decision on it.
  • Next topic of the agenda was on the amendment to some normative acts, in particular, changes planned for the High Council of Justice Statement N1 of 31st of January 2020.  The proposed changes envisaged creation of a new structural unit in the apparatus of the HCoJ of Georgia - Bureau of the Secretary of the High Council of Justice. According to the draft statement, functions of the Bureau are determined as follows: 
    1. The Bureau organizes and coordinates working schedule of the High Council of Justice; 
    2. Meeting with the citizens, on behalf of the Secretary;
    3. Organizes Council’s coordination with various governmental agencies and non-governmental organizations; 
    4. Prepares publications and hearings of the High Council Secretary; 
    5. Organizes official meetings and work visits planned by the Secretary of the HCoJ and Council members; 
    6. The Bureau of the High Council of Justice will take over the current functions of the human resources department of the Council Apparatus.

In particular, function to control HCoJ officers’ compliance with the legislation of Georgia, rules, regulations and work ethics, including conflict of interest requirements of the Council Apparatus.  The human rights department of the High Council of Justice Apparatus also ensures control over the disciplinary misconduct. Within its authority, it has right to request specific documentation, etc. from the officers. According to the draft statement, the Bureau of the HCoJ will take over this function. 

All members of the Hogh Council of Justice unanimously voted for the creation of the Bureau and approved amendments to the HCoJ of Georgia Statement N1 of 31st of January 2020.

  • The next topic of the agenda was related to electing members of the Prosecutor's Council. Prosecutor’s Council consists of 15 members, 2 out of which are selected by the HCoJ. Nikoloz Marsagishvili, the Council Secretary presented Vasil Mshvenieradze and a judge member of the Council to other Council members, as the candidates of the Prosecutor’s Council. There was no dissenting opinion on the topic and all members of the HCoJ unanimously voted for the candidates nominated by Nikoloz Marsagishvili. Paata Silagadze did not participate in the voting for his candidacy.
  • The topic - determining the composition of chambers/colleges in some district (city) and appellate courts was not discussed. Letter from the High School of Justice director was discussed within organizational topics. The director requested enlisting those candidates in the school, selected through the contest. All the members of the HCoJ unanimously approved the request. 

-----
Materials published on Courtwatch.ge is a property of Georgian Court Watch and, when using them, “Georgian Court Watch” shall be indicated as a source. 

Megi Shamatava