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Bangalore Principles of Judicial Conduct ACC perverts the Course of Justice

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 11:16 AM


Why does NZ nothave an enforceable Judicial ‘Code of Conduct’ based on ‘The BangalorePrinciples of Judicial Conduct’?
THE BANGALORE PRINCIPLES OFJUDICIAL CONDUCT 2002

(The Bangalore Draft Code of Judicial Conduct 2001adopted by theJudicial Group on Strengthening Judicial Integrity,as revised at the RoundTable Meeting of Chief Justices held at the PeacePalace, The Hague, November 25-26, 2002)

Preamble

WHEREAS the Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognizes asfundamental the principle that everyone is entitled in full equality to a fairand public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in thedetermination of rights and obligations and of any criminal charge.

WHEREAS the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rightsguarantees that all persons shall be equal before the courts, and that in thedetermination of any criminal charge or of rights and obligations in a suit atlaw, everyone shall be entitled, without undue delay, to a fair and publichearing by a competent, independent and impartial tribunal established by law.

WHEREAS the foregoing fundamental principles and rights are alsorecognized or reflected inregional human rights instruments, in domesticconstitutional, statutory and common law, and in judicial conventions and traditions.

WHEREAS the importance of a competent, independent and impartialjudiciary to the protection of human rights is given emphasis by the fact thatthe implementation of all the other rights ultimately depends upon the properadministration of justice.

WHEREAS a competent, independent and impartial judiciary islikewise essential if the courts are to fulfil their role in upholdingconstitutionalism and the rule of law.

WHEREAS public confidence in the judicial system and in themoral authority and integrity of the judiciary is of the utmostimportance in a modern democratic society.

WHEREAS it is essential that judges, individually andcollectively, respect and honour judicial office as a public trust and striveto enhance and maintain confidence in the judicial system.

WHEREAS the primary responsibility for the promotion andmaintenance of high standards of judicial conduct lies with the judiciaryin each country.

AND WHEREAS the United Nations Basic Principles on the Independence of the Judiciary aredesigned to secure and promote the independence of the judiciary, and areaddressed primarily to States.

THE FOLLOWING PRINCIPLES are intended to establish standards forethical conduct of judges. They are designed to provide guidance to judges andto afford the judiciary a framework for regulating judicial conduct.

They are also intended to assist members of the executive andthe legislature, and lawyers and the public in general, to better understandand support the judiciary. These principles presuppose that judges areaccountable for their conduct to appropriate institutions established tomaintain judicial standards, which are themselves independent and impartial,and are intended to supplement and not to derogate from existing rules of lawand conduct which bind the judge.

Value 1:

INDEPENDENCE

Principle:

Judicial independence is a pre-requisite to the rule of law anda fundamental guarantee of a fair trial. A judge shall therefore uphold andexemplify judicial independence in both its individual and institutionalaspects.

Application:

1.1 A judge shall exercisethe judicial function independently on the basis of the judge’s assessment ofthe facts and in accordance with a conscientious understanding of the law, freeof any extraneous influences, inducements, pressures, threats or interference,direct or indirect, from any quarter or for any reason.

1.2 A judge shall be independentin relation to society in general and in relation to the particular parties toa dispute which the judge has to adjudicate.

1.3 A judge shall not onlybe free from inappropriate connections with, and influence by, the executiveand legislative branches of government, but must also appear to a reasonableobserver to be free therefrom.

1.4 In performing judicialduties, a judge shall be independent of judicial colleagues in respect ofdecisions which the judge is obliged to make independently.

1.5 A judge shall encourage anduphold safeguards for the discharge of judicial duties in order to maintain andenhance the institutional and operational independence of the judiciary.

1.6 A judge shall exhibit andpromote high standards of judicial conduct in order to reinforce publicconfidence in the judiciary which is fundamental to the maintenance of judicialindependence.

Value 2:

IMPARTIALITY

Principle:

Impartiality is essential to the proper discharge of thejudicial office. It applies not only to the decision itself but also to theprocess by which the decision is made.

Application:

2.1 A judge shall performhis or her judicial duties without favour, bias or prejudice.

2.2 A judge shall ensure that hisor her conduct, both in and out of court, maintains and enhances the confidenceof the public, the legal profession and litigants in the impartiality of thejudge and of the judiciary.

2.3 A judge shall, so far as isreasonable, so conduct himself or herself as to minimise the occasions on whichit will be necessary for the judge to be disqualified from hearing or decidingcases.

2.4 A judge shall not knowingly,while a proceeding is before, or could come before, the judge, make any commentthat might reasonably be expected to affect the outcome of such proceeding orimpair the manifest fairness of the process. Nor shall the judge make anycomment in public or otherwise that might affect the fair trial of any personor issue.

2.5 A judge shall disqualifyhimself or herself from participating in any proceedings in which the judge isunable to decide the matter impartially or in which it may appear to areasonable observer that the judge is unable to decide the matter impartially.Such proceedings include, but are not limited to, instances where

2.5.1 the judge has actual bias or prejudiceconcerning a party or personal knowledge of disputed evidentiary factsconcerning the proceedings;

2.5.2 the judge previously served as a lawyeror was a material witness in the matter in controversy; or

2.5.3 the judge, or a member of the judge’sfamily, has an economic interest in the outcome of the matter in controversy:

Provided that disqualification of a judge shall not be requiredif no other tribunal can be constituted to deal with the case or, because ofurgent circumstances, failure to act could lead to a serious miscarriage ofjustice.

Value 3:

INTEGRITY

Principle:

Integrity is essential to the proper discharge of the judicialoffice.

Application:

3.1 A judge shall ensure that hisor her conduct is above reproach in the view of a reasonable observer.

3.2 The behaviour and conduct ofa judge must reaffirm the people’s faith in the integrity of thejudiciary. Justice must not merely be done butmust also be seen to be done.

Value 4:

PROPRIETY

Principle:

Propriety, and the appearance of propriety, are essential to theperformance of all of the activities of a judge.

Application:

4.1 A judge shall avoidimpropriety and the appearance of impropriety in all of the judge’s activities.

4.2. As a subject of constant publicscrutiny, a judge must accept personal restrictions that might be viewed asburdensome by the ordinary citizen and should do so freely and willingly. Inparticular, a judge shall conduct himself or herself in a way that isconsistent with the dignity of the judicial office.

4.3. A judge shall, in his or herpersonal relations with individual members of the legal profession who practiseregularly in the judge’s court, avoid situations which might reasonably giverise to the suspicion or appearance of favouritism or partiality.

4.4 A judge shall not participatein the determination of a case in which any member of the judge’s familyrepresents a litigant or is associated in any manner with the case.

4 .5 A judge shall not allow theuse of the judge’s residence by a member of the legal profession to receiveclients or other members of the legal profession.

4.6 A judge, like any othercitizen, is entitled to freedom of expression, belief, association
and assembly, but in exercising such rights, a judge shall always conduct himselfor
herself in such a manner as to preserve the dignity of the judicial office andthe impartiality and independence of the judiciary.


4.7 A judge shall inform himselfor herself about the judge’s personal and fiduciary financial interests and shallmake reasonable efforts to be informed about the financial interests of membersof the judge’s family.

4.8 A judge shall not allow thejudge’s family, social or other relationships improperly to influence thejudge’s judicial conduct and judgment as a judge.

4.9 A judge shall not use or lendthe prestige of the judicial office to advance the private interests of thejudge, a member of the judge’s family or of anyone else, nor shall a judgeconvey or permit others to convey the impression that anyone is in a specialposition improperly to influence the judge in the performance of judicialduties.

4.10 Confidential information acquired by ajudge in the judge’s judicial capacity shall not be used or disclosed by thejudge for any other purpose not related to the judge’s judicial duties.

4.11 Subject to the proper performance ofjudicial duties, a judge may:

4.11.1 write,lecture, teach and participate in activities concerning the law, the legalsystem, the administration of justice or related matters;

4.11.2 appearat a public hearing before an official body concerned with matters relating tothe law, the legal system, the administration of justice or related matters;

4.11.3 serveas a member of an official body, or other government commission, committee oradvisory body, if such membership is not inconsistent with the perceivedimpartiality and political neutrality of a judge; or

4.11.4 engagein other activities if such activities do not detract from the dignity of thejudicial office or otherwise interfere with the performance of judicial duties.

4.12 A judge shall not practise law whilstthe holder of judicial office.

4.13 A judge may form or join associations ofjudges or participate in other organisations representing the interests ofjudges.

4.14 A judge and members of the judge’sfamily, shall neither ask for, nor accept, any gift, bequest, loan or favour inrelation to anything done or to be done or omitted to be done by the judge inconnection with the performance of judicial duties.

4.15 A judge shall not knowingly permit courtstaff or others subject to the judge’s influence, direction or authority, toask for, or accept, any gift, bequest, loan or favour in relation to anythingdone or to be done or omitted to be done in connection with his or her dutiesor functions.

4.16 Subject to law and to any legalrequirements of public disclosure, a judge may receive a token gift, award orbenefit as appropriate to the occasion on which it is made provided that suchgift, award or benefit might not reasonably be perceived as intended toinfluence the judge in the performance of judicial duties or otherwise giverise to an appearance of partiality.

Value 5:

EQUALITY

Principle:

nsuring equality of treatment to all before the courts isessential to the due performance of the judicial office.

Application:

5.1 A judge shall be aware of,and understand, diversity in society and differences arising from varioussources, including but not limited to race, colour, sex, religion, nationalorigin, caste, disability, age, marital status, sexual orientation, social andeconomic status and other like causes (“irrelevant grounds”).

5.2 A judge shall not, in theperformance of judicial duties, by words or conduct, manifest bias or prejudicetowards any person or group on irrelevant grounds.

5.3 A judge shall carry outjudicial duties with appropriate consideration for all persons, such as theparties, witnesses, lawyers, court staff and judicial colleagues, withoutdifferentiation on any irrelevant ground, immaterial to the proper performanceof such duties.

5.4 A judge shall not knowinglypermit court staff or others subject to the judge’s influence, direction or controlto differentiate between persons concerned, in a matter before the judge, onany irrelevant ground.

5.5 A judge shall require lawyersin proceedings before the court to refrain from manifesting, by words orconduct, bias or prejudice based on irrelevant grounds, except such as arelegally relevant to an issue in proceedings and may be the subject oflegitimate advocacy.

Value 6:

COMPETENCE AND DILIGENCE

Principle:

Competence and diligence are prerequisites to the dueperformance of judicial office.

Application:

6.1 The judicial duties of ajudge take precedence over all other activities.

6.2 A judge shall devote thejudge’s professional activity to judicial duties, which include not only theperformance of judicial functions and responsibilities in court and the makingof decisions, but also other tasks relevant to the judicial office or thecourt’s operations.

6.3 A judge shall take reasonablesteps to maintain and enhance the judge’s knowledge, skills and personalqualities necessary for the proper performance of judicial duties, takingadvantage for this purpose of the training and other facilities which should bemade available, under judicial control, to judges.

6.4 A judge shall keep himself orherself informed about relevant developments of international law, includinginternational conventions and other instruments establishing human rightsnorms.

6.5 A judge shall perform alljudicial duties, including the delivery of reserved decisions, efficiently,fairly and with reasonable promptness.

6.6 A judge shall maintain orderand decorum in all proceedings before the court and be patient, dignified andcourteous in relation to litigants, jurors, witnesses, lawyers and others withwhom the judge deals in an official capacity. The judge shall require similarconduct of legal representatives, court staff and others subject to the judge’sinfluence, direction or control.

6.7 A judge shall not engage inconduct incompatible with the diligent discharge of judicial duties.

IMPLEMENTATION

By reason of the nature of judicial office, effective measuresshall be adopted by national judiciaries to provide mechanisms to implementthese principles if such mechanisms are not already in existence in theirjurisdictions.

DEFINITIONS

In this statement of principles, unless the context otherwisepermits or requires, the following meanings shall be attributed to the wordsused:

Court staff”includes the personal staff of the judge including law clerks.

Judge” meansany person exercising judicial power, however designated.

Judge’s family”includes a judge’s spouse, son, daughter, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, and anyother close relative or person who is a companion or employee of the judge andwho lives in the judge’s household.

Judge’s spouse”includes a domestic partner of the judge or any other person of either sex in a close personal relationship with the judge

Explanatory Note

1. At its firstmeeting held in Vienna in April 2000 on the invitation of the United NationsCentre for International Crime Prevention, and in conjunction with the 10thUnited Nations Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment ofOffenders, the Judicial Group on Strengthening Judicial Integrity (comprisingChief Justice Latifur Rahman of Bangladesh, Chief Justice Bhaskar Rao ofKarnataka State in India, Justice Govind Bahadur Shrestha of Nepal, ChiefJustice Uwais of Nigeria, Deputy Vice-President Langa of the ConstitutionalCourt of South Africa, Chief Justice Nyalali of Tanzania, and Justice Odoki ofUganda, meeting under the chairmanship of Judge Christopher Weeramantry,Vice-President of the International Court of Justice, with Justice MichaelKirby of the High Court of Australia as rapporteur, and with the participationof Dato’ Param Cumaraswamy, UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judgesand Lawyers) recognized the need for a code against which the conduct ofjudicial officers may be measured. Accordingly, the Judicial Group requestedthat codes of judicial conduct which had been adopted in some jurisdictions beanalyzed, and a report be prepared by the Co-ordinator of the JudicialIntegrity Programme, Dr Nihal Jayawickrama, concerning: (a)
the core considerations which recur in such codes; and (B) the optional or additional
considerations which occur in some, but not all, such codes and which may ormay not be
suitable for adoption in particular countries.


2. In preparing adraft code of judicial conduct in accordance with the directions set out
above, reference was made to several existing codes and internationalinstruments including, in
particular, the following:


(a) The Code ofJudicial Conduct adopted by the House of Delegates of the American BarAssociation, August 1972.

(B) Declaration of Principlesof Judicial Independence issued by the ChiefJustices of the AustralianStates and Territories,April 1997.

© Code of Conduct for theJudges of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh, prescribed by the Supreme JudicialCouncil in the exercise of power under Article 96(4)(a) of the Constitution ofthe People’s Republic of Bangladesh, May 2000.

(d) Ethical Principles forJudges, drafted with the cooperation of the Canadian Judges Conference andendorsed by the Canadian Judicial Council, 1998.

(e) The European Charter onthe Statute for Judges, Council of Europe, July 1998.

(f) The Idaho Code of JudicialConduct 1976.

(g) Restatement of Valuesof Judicial Life adopted by the Chief Justices Conference of India, 1999.

(h) The Iowa Code of JudicialConduct.

(i) Code of Conductfor Judicial Officers of Kenya, July 1999.

(j) The Judges’ Codeof Ethics of Malaysia, prescribed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on therecommendation of the Chief Justice, the President of the Court of Appeal andthe Chief Judges of the High Courts, in the exercise of powers conferred byArticle 125(3A) of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia, 1994.

(k) The Code of Conduct forMagistrates in Namibia.

(l) Rules GoverningJudicial Conduct, New York State, USA.

(m) Code of Conduct for JudicialOfficers of the FederalRepublic of Nigeria.

(n) Code of Conduct to beobserved by Judges of the Supreme Court and of the High Courts of Pakistan.

(o) The Code of JudicialConduct of the Philippines, September 1989

(p) The Canons of JudicialEthics of the Philippines, proposed by thePhilippines Bar Association, approved by the Judges of First Instance ofManila, and adopted for the guidance of and observance by the judges under theadministrative supervision of the Supreme Court, including municipal judges andcity judges.

(q) Yandina Statement:Principles of Independence of the Judiciary in Solomon Islands, November 2000.

® Guidelines for Judgesof South Africa, issued by the ChiefJustice, the President of the Constitutional Court, and the Presidentsof High Courts, the Labour Appeal Court, and the Land ClaimsCourt, March 2000.

(s) Code of Conduct forJudicial Officers of Tanzania, adopted by the Judges and MagistratesConference, 1984.

(t) The Texas Code of JudicialConduct

(u) Code of Conduct forJudges, Magistrates and Other Judicial Officers of Uganda, adopted by theJudges of the Supreme Court and the High Court, July 1989.

(v) The Code of Conduct ofthe Judicial Conference of the United States.

(w) The Canons of JudicialConduct for the Commonwealth of Virginia, adopted andpromulgated by the Supreme Court of Virginia, 1998.

(x) The Code of JudicialConduct adopted by the Supreme Court of the State of Washington, USA, October1995.

(y) The Judicial (Code ofConduct) Act, enacted by the Parliament of Zambia, December 1999.

(z) Draft Principles on theIndependence of the Judiciary (“Siracusa Principles”), prepared by a committeeof experts convened by the International Association of Penal Law, theInternational Commission of Jurists, and the Centre for the Independence ofJudges and Lawyers, 1981.

(aa) Minimum Standards of JudicialIndependence adopted by the International Bar Association, 1982.

(bb) United Nations Basic Principles onthe Independence of the Judiciary,endorsed by the UN General Assembly, 1985.

(cc) Draft Universal Declaration on theIndependence of Justice (“Singhvi Declaration”) prepared by Mr L.V. Singhvi, UNSpecial Rapporteur on the Study on the Independence of the Judiciary, 1989.

(dd) The Beijing Statement of Principles ofthe Independence of the Judiciary inthe Lawasia Region, adopted by the 6th Conference of Chief Justices,August 1997.

(ee) The Latimer House Guidelines forthe Commonwealth on good practice governing relations between the Executive,Parliament and the Judiciary in the promotion of good governance, the rule oflaw and human rights to ensure the effective implementation of the HararePrinciples, 1998.

(ff) The Policy Framework forPreventing and Eliminating Corruption and Ensuring the Impartiality of theJudicial System, adopted by the expert group convened by the Centre for theIndependence of Judges and Lawyers, February 2000.

At its second meeting held in Bangalore in February 2001, theJudicial Group (comprising Chief Justice Mainur Reza Chowdhury of Bangladesh,Justice Claire L’Heureux Dube of Canada, Chief Justice Reddi of Karnataka Statein India, Chief Justice Upadhyay of Nepal, Chief Justice Uwais of Nigeria,Deputy Chief Justice Langa of South Africa, Chief Justice Silva of Sri Lanka,Chief Justice Samatta of Tanzania, and Chief Justice Odoki of Uganda, meetingunder the chairmanship of Judge Weeramantry, with Justice Kirby as rapporteur,and with the participation of the UN Special Rapporteur and Justice Bhagwati,Chairman of the UN Human Rights Committee, representing the UN HighCommissioner for Human Rights) proceeding by way of examination of the draftplaced before it, identified the core values, formulated the relevantprinciples, and agreed on the Bangalore Draft Code of Judicial Conduct. TheJudicial Group recognized, however, that since the Bangalore Draft had beendeveloped by judges drawn principally from common law countries, it wasessential that it be scrutinized by judges of other legal traditions to enableit to assume the status of a duly authenticated international code of judicialconduct.

The Bangalore Draft was widely disseminated among judges of bothcommon law and civil law systems and discussed at several judicial conferences.In June 2002, it was reviewed by the Working Party of the Consultative Councilof European Judges (CCJE-GT), comprising Vice- President Reissner of theAustrian Association of Judges, Judge Fremr of the High Court in the CzechRepublic, President Lacabarats of the Cour d’Appel de Paris in France, JudgeMallmann of the Federal Administrative Court of Germany, Magistrate Sabato ofItaly, Judge Virgilijus of the Lithuanian Court of Appeal, Premier ConseillerWiwinius of the Cour d’Appel of Luxembourg, Juge Conseiller Afonso of the Courtof Appeal of Portugal, Justice Ogrizek of the Supreme Court of Slovenia,President Hirschfeldt of the Svea Court of Appeal in Sweden, and Lord JusticeMance of the United Kingdom. On the initiative of the American Bar Association,the Bangalore Draft was translated into the national languages, and reviewed byjudges, of the Central and Eastern European countries; in particular, ofBosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Romania, Serbia and Slovakia.

The Bangalore Draft was revised in the light of the commentsreceived from CCJE-GT and others referred to above; Opinion no.1 (2001) of CCJEon standards concerning the independence of the judiciary; the draft Opinion ofCCJE on the principles and rules governing judges’ professional conduct, inparticular ethics, incompatible behaviour and impartiality; and by reference tomore recent codes of judicial conduct including the Guide to Judicial Conductpublished by the Council of Chief Justices of Australia in June 2002, the ModelRules of Conduct for Judges of the Baltic States, the Code of Judicial Ethicsfor Judges of the People’s Republic of China, and the Code of Judicial Ethicsof the Macedonian Judges Association.

The revised Bangalore Draft was placed before a Round-TableMeeting of Chief Justices (or their representatives) from the civil law system,held in the PeacePalace in The Hague, Netherlands, in November 2002,with Judge Weeramantry presiding. Those participating were Judge Vladimir deFreitas of the Federal Court of Appeal of Brazil, Chief Justice Iva Brozova ofthe Supreme Court of the Czech Republic, Chief Justice Mohammad Fathy Naguib ofthe Supreme Constitutional Court of Egypt, Conseillere Christine Chanet of theCour de Cassation of France, President Genaro David Gongora Pimentel of theSuprema Corte de Justicia de la Nacion of Mexico, President Mario Mangaze ofthe Supreme Court of Mozambique, President Pim Haak of the Hoge Raad derNederlanden, Justice Trond Dolva of the Supreme Court of Norway, and ChiefJustice Hilario Davide of the Supreme Court of the Philippines. Alsoparticipating in one session were the following Judges of the InternationalCourt of Justice: Judge Ranjeva (Madagascar), Judge Herczegh (Hungary), JudgeFleischhauer (Germany), Judge Koroma (Sierra Leone), Judge Higgins (UnitedKingdom), Judge Rezek (Brazil), Judge Elaraby (Egypt), and Ad-Hoc Judge Frank(USA). The UN Special Rapporteur was in attendance. The “Bangalore Principlesof Judicial Conduct” was the product of this meeting.

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#2 User is offline   netcoachnz 

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 12:29 PM

In 2006 the United Nations Social and Economic Council, by resolution 2006/23, invited member States consistent with their domestic legal systems, to encourage the judiciaries to take into consideration the Bangalore Principles of Judicial Conduct (2002) when reviewing or developing rules with respect to the professional and ethical conduct of members of the judiciary.

The Bangalore Principles of Judicial Conduct are the undisputed international benchmark for the conduct of judiciaries. They take the form of six core values that should guide the exercise of judicial office, namely: independence, impartiality, integrity, equality, propriety and competence and diligence. The Principles go on to deal with specific considerations judges should be aware of in respect of each stated value. The judiciary in Tonga endorse and adopt the Bangalore Principles.
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Posted 01 February 2013 - 02:19 PM

Principle:<br style="color: rgb(28, 40, 55); font-size: 13px; line-height: 19px; background-color: rgb(250, 251, 252);"><br style="color: rgb(28, 40, 55); font-size: 13px; line-height: 19px; background-color: rgb(250, 251, 252);">Judicial independence is a pre-requisite to the rule of law and a fundamental guarantee of a fair trial. A judge shall therefore uphold and exemplify judicial independence in both its individual and institutional aspects.<br style="color: rgb(28, 40, 55); font-size: 13px; line-height: 19px; background-color: rgb(250, 251, 252);">




and this will never happen, while acc judges are on the acc payroll...


and important documentation is buried or withheld....by acc...


this governments manipulation of the social contract is way out of control...as highlighted with the Law Commission report
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Posted 01 February 2013 - 09:52 PM

Top judges speak out in defence of system
By David Fisher
5:30 AM Saturday Oct 27, 2012

Comments come against a backdrop of calls for greater accountability

Two of New Zealand's chief judges have stepped forward in defence of the judicial system after public criticism of controversial decisions. High Court chief judge Helen Winkelmann and District Court chief judge Jan-Marie Doogue told the Weekend Herald of the effect personal comments had on judges.

But they also upheld the right and role of the public to make those comments and take part in debate about the decisions made by judges.

Justice Winkelmann said: "The courts are open to the public and the media and are regularly subject to criticism.

"In that sense, I don't see how they could become more open. Criticism of judicial performance must be expected as part of how our open society works."

The interviews come after an outcry over decisions and comments made by judges at district court level, where 145 judges handle about 160,000 cases each year.

Judge Raoul Neave became a target for abuse when he sentenced investment banker Guy Hallwright to community work and a driving ban after breaking the legs of a man he drove over.

Calls were then made for Judge David McNaughton to stand down after details emerged of his decision to bail the teenager who went on to murder Christie Marceau.

The two judges also spoke against a backdrop of calls for greater accountability from the judiciary.

Judges are frequently criticised by the Sensible Sentencing Trust lobby group.

A recent State Services Commission report into the Ministry of Justice raised performance standards for the judiciary and the Law Commission has questioned whether the judiciary should produce an annual report to be "individually and collectively accountable".

Justice Winkelmann said the judiciary had an accountability programme which showed the number of cases in the court system and how long it took for those to be heard.

She said "setting standards that measure the efficiency with which a court operates is important" but "achieving those standards depends in large part upon the adequacy and appropriateness of the resources made available to the courts".

Funding was not directly provided as it was in Australia.

"For these resources we are again dependent upon the Ministry of Justice."

She said calls for "accountability" on the quality of judgments was not possible outside the current system of appeals, which provided its own safeguards.

"The requirements that judges work in public and that they provide reasons for their decisions provides the best means of accountability. Their decisions can be, and are, the subject of public comment and criticism.

"It can also be seen as a form of sanction that the judges are able to be criticised publicly. Most judges who experience that kind of criticism would feel it keenly."

Judge Doogue said judges underwent ongoing training through the Institute of Judicial Studies to "improve clarity and consistency".

Judges were bound by convention not to comment publicly on decisions by them or other judges.

"Like all professionals, any criticism is taken seriously. It not only affects the judge concerned and their family but impacts on all of the judiciary. However, this is part of the judicial role, and judges understand that their comments can cause debate. They recognise that the public have every right to express their opinion."

She rejected suggestions the judiciary was out of touch.

"Engagement with the community is essential for our judges. While we are aware that impartiality is absolutely necessary in order that we are fair in our judgments, the judges also understand that they apply the law on behalf of the community."
By David Fisher (NZ Herald)
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Posted 04 February 2013 - 08:38 AM

it is my belief, that Justice Winklemann stood her ground, and did an excellent job

wouldn't mind having her for an evidential review, in High Court, against acc....


at least she makes sound Judgements, based on facts...

quote from learned Judge: Criticism of judicial performance must be expected as part of how our open society works."


as the Law Commission's report stated...to be fair, impartial, and within the rules of natural justice... acc claimants should go to Judicial Review under High Court Rules ...


not be subjected to the only 3 judges left on acc books, whereby acc get to manipulate the information presented to said acc judges...


and to be honest...if the system wasnt a rort...then there would be a lot less people waiting to go to court, which is once again a waste of taxpayers money when medical evidence is ignored in favour of actuarial insurance management...
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