Direct and proportional election in the CGPJ: this is the system proposed by two judicial associations

The Francisco de Vitoria judicial associations (AJFV) and the Independent Judicial Forum, which represent more than 1,100 active judges and magistrates, have agreed on a system for the election of the twelve judges of the General Council of the Judiciary by their own career.

Direct and proportional election in the CGPJ: this is the system proposed by two judicial associations

The Francisco de Vitoria judicial associations (AJFV) and the Independent Judicial Forum, which represent more than 1,100 active judges and magistrates, have agreed on a system for the election of the twelve judges of the General Council of the Judiciary by their own career. This reform, they point out, is in line with the standards of independence claimed and demanded from the Council of Europe; that is to say, to put an end to the image of politicization in the selection of the members and that has resulted in several calls of attention from the European instances.

The proposal to reform the election of judges is based on three key points: on the one hand, the direct election of the twelve by members of the active judicial career but through a system that guarantees proportional plurality in its composition.

In this way, they propose that each voter can vote for a maximum of six candidates who have obtained the stipulated endorsements; and that the vote be "qualified", that is, more points would be assigned to the first voter than to the second, and so on.

Secondly, all judicial associations, but also groups of voters and individual judges, who achieve the established endorsements, may submit candidacies for these 12 active judges and magistrates, in a number that does not completely preclude the presentation of those who they legitimately want to aspire to be elected members. It must be taken into account that of the more than 5,000 judges that make up the race, half are not affiliated, so they must be given a channel of representation.

Full nominations must necessarily present at least one candidate from the category of Supreme Court magistrate, one candidate from the category of magistrate and one candidate from the category of judge. In this way, it would be possible for the CGPJ to have a plural and representative configuration of the judicial career, and that, as a consequence of this, the decisions adopted in it are "the result of a debate, exchange of opinions and points of agreement". view that would allow both their neutrality and impartiality to be achieved, as well as the weighting of all aspects of the issue to be decided", highlight AJFV and FJI.

According to both associations, the agreement adopted is based on the principle, recognized both internationally and internally, that in the sphere of full democracies an independent Judiciary "is an essential factor for democracy and the rule of law, and that configures as one of the fundamental guarantees in this regard the existence of a system of government of the Judges that is not controlled by the other powers».

The ultimate goal of the proposals made is to achieve a governing body for judges and magistrates "not controlled by the other powers." And this because "the current system of electing the members of the General Council of the Judiciary generates in citizens the perception that the CGPJ is subject to political power, which is seriously detrimental to democracy and the rule of law," they maintain. both associations.

Together with all of the above, both the AJFV and the FJI propose a solution to prevent a situation like the one currently experienced by the CGPJ, which has been in office for three and a half years because the two main parties have not agreed to carry out its renewal.

To this end, and since "political ups and downs can delay the appointment of non-judicial members", it would be advisable to legislate the possibility that the new CGPJ "begin its path after the election of the judicial members, either functioning provisionally only with the judicial members, as long as Parliament does not comply with its constitutional duty, or, alternatively, by extending the previous non-judicial members".

AJFV and FJI will now send their proposal to the Professional Association of the Judiciary and to Judges for Democracy so that they analyze them and, where appropriate, join them, before being sent to all the parliamentary groups and to the constitutional body itself. .

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