The Coalition Reacts to the Suspension of the Monitoring of the Judges' Assets by the Anti-Corruption Bureau

The court decision to suspend the process of examination of the judges' assets provides additional evidence justifying the need for the introduction of an extraordinary mechanism of integrity checks. The ruling party must stop damaging the interests of Georgia, withdraw the reinitiated Russian law, and launch the reform of the judiciary.

On April 5, it was revealed that four judges, including Mikheil Chinchaladze and Levan Murusidze, halted the inspection of their assets by the Anti-Corruption Bureau through court proceedings. This is not the first case of abuse of justice system to obstruct the work of anti-corruption mechanisms.

Corruption has no place in the judiciary. This belief is widely shared, except for by those who support corruption in the judiciary. Honest judges should be primarily supportive of utilizing all available mechanisms to repudiate their potential involvement in corruption.

It is noteworthy that the judges who initiated the court case against the Anti-Corruption Bureau are the ones whose integrity, including their financial status, is a matter of considerable public concern. This fact effectively explains the Clan's resistance to the implementation of integrity check mechanism. A judge who is apprehensive of an anti-corruption mechanism as limited in scope as the verification of asset declarations will naturally oppose a more comprehensive examination of their integrity.

This incident sets a troubling precedent and provides the Clan members with an opportunity to exploit the courts to avoid assessment of their financial integrity, even within the limited scope of the inspection conducted by the Anti-Corruption Bureau. The aforementioned further points to the need to check the integrity of judges appointed to key judicial positions through an extraordinary mechanism. In this context the ruling party has opted for supporting the judicial Clan, obstructing the systemic reform of the justice system and instead of implementing the nine steps outlined by the European Union, reinitiated the Russian law.