Three Important Conclusions from the Courts regarding Rough Drafts of Reform

( Translated by Stephanie DiBello, a CSN volunteer translator )

Judges from the 4 High Courts met amongst themselves to discuss the drafting of the Justice Reform, which was sent to them by the Minister of Internal Affairs. There were 3 important conclusions.

First conclusion:

It is not a justice reform.

Nothing is raised about the judicial backlog. Nothing is proposed to solve the delays in the resolution of conflicts, which is what most affects Colombians seeking justice. Nothing is stated to give access to justice to those who most need it so that they do not have to resort to guardianship. Absolutely nothing is proposed that would ensure that the sector’s budget does not diminish, as occurs with the fiscal adjustments every year.

The first conclusion from the judge’s meeting: This draft cannot be called justice reform!

Second conclusion: This project is really aimed at redistributing power.
The judges concluded that the proposed norms have to do with who elects whom, who loses power, and who becomes more powerful. According to this second conclusion made the by judges, the project gives more power to the President of the Republic and takes power away from the Courts and the Attorney General’s Office.
Look at the judges’ notes!

First: The High Courts’ power to nominate candidates for Attorney General and Comptroller General is taken away. The President will be the only one who may nominate precisely those who provide presidential oversight: the Inspector General and the Comptroller.
Second: The project says that the President declined to nominate a group of three candidates so that the Senate would choose judges from the Constitutional Court. A fallacy of distraction. The nominations will take until next October, with the current system; the President nominates.

Third: Only the President will nominate candidates for the Inspector General, Attorney General, Comptroller General, and the human right’s Ombudsman.

This is the second grand conclusion from the virtual Congress of the judges!

What are the citizens’ biggest worries regarding the justice system?

The judges asked themselves- what are the citizens’ biggest worries regarding the justice system?
First: It is far away.

Second: It does not exist for the daily life of a citizen.

Third: If it weren’t for the guardianship, nothing would work in the justice system.

Fourth: The bureaucracy is endless and a punishment in itself.

Fifth: There are many problems to which the justice system does not give an answer. What happens when consumers suffer because they have bought a defective product?- nothing more than resignation.
Sixth: For those who have been deprived of their liberty, the terms established by the laws do not exist; they die in prison so to speak, even if they are innocent.
Of course the prisons continue piling up with more than half of their inmates without a sentence.

The third conclusion of the judges… While all this is happening, they present us with a draft that covers everything but justice!

Colombia Support Network
P.O. Box 1505
Madison, WI  53701-1505
phone:  (608) 257-8753
fax:  (608) 255-6621

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