You are here: AHRC > Rule of Law Charter > Updates > ROLC-U-5
¡@ ROLC-U-5 from 28.02.2006

A statement on elimination of corruption and executive control

Asia: Towards the elimination of corruption and executive control of the judiciary

Introductory note

A group of 24 persons from Cambodia, China, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Philippines, South Korea, Sri Lanka and Thailand gathered in Hong Kong from February 16-21, 2006 for the first consultation on the launching of the Asian Charter on the Rule of Law. The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) proposed the drafting of such a charter in October 2005. This proposal was based on the AHRC's realization, having worked extensively for human rights throughout Asia, that discussions on issues relating to human rights have limited meaning if they are not linked to the obstacles faced in the development of the rule of law within the region.

The purpose of having wide consultations prior to the drafting of such a charter is to enable as many persons as possible to voice their experiences regarding the rule of law as well as human rights. It is hoped that the participants at these consultations will detail the manner in which the rule of law is being subverted in their countries and suggest various means through which these problems can be addressed, both by governments as well as civil society organizations.

The first of these consultations was an occasion on which intense discussion regarding the collapse of the rule of law took place. The participants, among whom were senior retired judges, practicing lawyers and human rights advocates, discussed at length the variety of experiences affecting their different jurisdictions.

These deliberations brought to the surface problems facing democratic institutions in respective countries in general, and problems facing respective justice systems in particular. Harsh realities faced by ordinary people as well as judges and lawyers, due to defects in the policing, prosecution and judicial systems were discussed. The recordings of these conversations have been made available at

Mid-way through the deliberations there was a realization among the participants that the primary issues needed to be discussed were those regarding the corruption and the executive control of the judiciary. During this discussion, the areas covered were the causes giving rise to judicial corruption and executive control, the manner in which such corruption and control takes place and suggested remedies. All the participants were encouraged to reflect on these issues based on their own country experiences. The following statement consists of the list of issues that came up during the discussion. The participants were intensely involved in articulating their problems and the substantive points identified by them have been retained, with only minor editorial changes.

One of the difficulties faced by the participants in the course of this exercise was the different legal systems that exist throughout Asia; certain countries have common law systems, others have civil law systems, while still others have mixed or socialist systems. Furthermore, even countries with the same legal system have disparities, owing to their different levels of jurisprudential development. Under these circumstances, the participants did not attempt to introduce solutions that would be valid for all situations, but rather they reflected the problems as concretely as possible, to ensure that the depth of the problems would not be overlooked. In particular, the participants avoided making generalized statements that may sound good and be acceptable to everyone, but in fact would reveal very little of the reality experienced by people in their daily encounters.

Notwithstanding the shock experienced by the participants in listening to the details of corruption and executive control within the judiciary in countries of Asia, there was a common perception that they had contributed to the study of this problem from a new perspective. They agreed to take this discussion to their countries and further analyze the problems, not just with the urban elite, but also with those from remoter areas. There was also consensus to continue the discussions regionally and internationally through meetings as well as by way of print and electronic media.

The importance of the approach taken in discussing the judiciary during the consultation

The independence of the judiciary has been a common topic of discussion in Asia as well as other places. However, the discussions have taken place mostly from a western text-book approach, enumerating certain aspects of judicial independence such as legal provisions for the separation of powers, financial independence by drawing funds from a regular fund not subjected to political control, adequate remuneration for judges and security of tenure. In recent decades there have even been gatherings of chief justices from different countries, resulting in the declaration of certain principles relating to this issue (the Bangalore Principles of Judicial Conduct, 2002).

This present statement differs from such approaches by shifting the discussion on judicial independence to a discussion on the elimination of judicial corruption and executive control. Such an approach attempts to begin from the day to day experience of people in different countries, and thereafter map out possible ways to eliminate the practices that negate judicial independence. In other words, the approach was to diagnose the disease before prescribing the remedies. The success of this approach was evident by everyone's active participation, resulting in a lively debate on the issue. This is important, as the independence of the judiciary is a significant constitutional issue, which must necessarily be debated by everyone in a country. Constitutions created without such involvement will be unable to guide popular movements for reform.

Areas to be covered:

  • Definitions of judicial corruption and executive control

  • Causes of judicial corruption and executive control

  • Stating details of the manner in which corruption take place

  • Stating consequences of judicial control

  • Making recommendations for the prevention of corruption and executive control and making the necessary changes in order to implement such recommendations.

A. Definition of judicial corruption and executive control

  • Definition should also cover investigation and pre-trial processes in addition to the actual trial process

  • Judicial corruption pertains to acts or behavior or attempts that impair either the search for or the submission of the truth in the delivery of justice. It covers any act or omission from any source, whether bribery, intimidation or any other act committed with the intent or reasonably foreseeable result that judicial or quasi- judicial orders, judgments and other issuances and judicial treatments will result in corruption. Judicial corruption includes the acceptance of patronization offered by the people in power/ leading to subversion of the administration of justice causing bias

  • Causing unfairness in the criminal process from very start of process to end

B. Causes of corruption

B. I. Separation of powers

  • Lack of separation of judiciary from executive

  • Politicized methods of selection/appointment, transfer, dismissal and disciplinary control of judicial officers

  • Calling upon judges to perform functions and duties other than of a judicial nature

  • Factors that cause insecurity and fear among judges

  • Lack of checks and balances for proper assessment of judiciary

B. II. Appointments, remuneration and disciplinary control

  • Inadequate remuneration

  • Offering and acceptance of extrajudicial positions to sitting or retired judges

  • The lack of adequate disciplinary procedure for higher judiciary/and other judicial officers (ombudsman) apart from impeachment, which easily leads to absolute impunity for judges

  • Failure to take prompt disciplinary action on misconduct of judicial officers/complete absence of disciplinary process

  • Non attendance to complaints regarding individual indiscipline among judicial officers

  • Lowering disciplinary mechanism for the higher judiciary such as the method of impeachment

  • Lack of adequate mechanisms to deal with financial pressure on judges

  • Institutional favoritism (promotions based on connections rather than merit)

  • Incompetence of judges, defects in training process, lack of courage on the part of judges

  • The attitude of judges being in favor of powerful elements as against the poor and marginalized

  • Involvement of the bar with the bench and taking part in non professional activities together, including social and religious activities

  • Relatives of judges practicing in the same courts

  • Judges hearing cases despite having conflicts of interest

  • Judges hearing cases of friends/relatives

  • Lack of ethical disciplinary procedures with the possibility of participation by civil society

  • Inadequate remuneration for court staff thereby leading them to be engaged in influencing judges by undue means to gain profit

  • Extension of tenure of office beyond pensionable age thereby creating possibilities by authorities to give further extension

  • The offer of various special perks for particular judges making way for political influence in judicial process

  • Inadequate measures for protection in their retired life lead judges to undertake other assignments for profit

  • Judicial arrogance which obstructs the due judicial process

B. III. Procedural issues

  • Constitutional provisions that provide scope for judicial corruption and executive control

  • Structural and systemic causes: appointment of judges by executive and endorsed by politicians, cultural value of debt of gratitude, favoring of private property as against the right to vote

  • Lack of law on contempt of court giving the opportunity for judges to exploit or abuse this power; contempt of court used as sword

  • Difficulties in proof of judicial conduct, leading to impunity

  • Absence of impartial case management/bench fixing

  • Lack of reform of criminal procedural laws in terms of human rights standards

  • Lack of Ombudsmen procedure in court proceedings

  • Lack of adequate legal aid, especially for foreigners, minorities (lack of interpretation facilities)

  • Defects of investigating bodies leading to injustice in adjudication and lack of accountability in that matter

  • Inadequacies in technical aspects of evidence such as forensic facilities which gives rise to many possibilities for corruption

  • Inadequate protection for female staff working in courts, leading to close relationships with judges, police

  • Delays in adjudication process

  • Absence of expert witnesses, eyewitnesses and the legal procedure allowing judgments being made without evidence being led in court

  • Lack of facilities for courts to function effectively (fax machines, computers, recording equipment etc)

  • Emergency and anti-terrorism laws take over normal powers of the judiciary, giving rise to corruption and political manipulation

  • Deprivation of judicial review and bringing down of judicial powers which undermines the importance of the judiciary in the constitutional process, as judges are prevented from performing the fundamental function of interpretation of laws

  • Limits on retrials culminating in miscarriages of justice

  • Retrospective legislation

  • Courts being overloaded with work

  • Wide discretion without proper guidelines for sentencing and punishment

  • Lack of expertise in judges dealing with complicated cases where special and technical knowledge is required/ Lack of specialist lists in court

B. IV. Issues of public criticism and supervision

  • Misuse of contempt of courts and other methods of intimidation on the public

  • Inadequate public monitoring including public discussion on judiciary

  • Lack of space for critical discussion on or comments about court judgments

  • Lack of publicly available information on court process and proceedings

  • Lack of civil participation in judicial procedure, eg. Absence of juries

  • Lack of protection for whistle blowers

C. Details in the manner of corruption

C. I. Direct acts of corruption

  • Taking orders from political masters; by accepting rewards or being intimidated by punishments from political authorities (also post retirement)

  • Higher judicial officers bullying lower judiciary, including giving orders as to the way the cases must be decided

  • Forcing unprincipled settlements

  • Intimidating lawyers by direct or indirect means to prevent them from providing proper services to clients

  • Not following procedures of making and writing judgments in order to refuse application in arbitrary manner

  • Manipulation of the authorities that have the power of appointment, transfer, promotion and disciplinary control of judges etc.

  • Misuse of judicial discretion, including discretion to interpret laws or evidence, as a cover for conclusions arrived at by corrupt means or to favor certain parties

  • Devoting judicial time for other matters

  • Not sitting at required times and paying little attention to the rights and conveniences of litigants and lawyers

  • Handing over judicial functions to non judicial officers like assistants or other lawyers

  • Favoring individual lawyers or lawyers' cliques

  • Making judgments without reading of evidence and rendering decisions without evidence to that effect in court records

  • Deciding cases purely on technical issues without going into substantive matters, particularly in public interest issues

  • Making false travel claims and traveling with others like police officers who have matters to deal with in courts

  • Not recording exactly what the witnesses say. And then the judges dictating the witness statement leaving room for omissions and additions (lack of recording equipment)

  • Not recording the motions and applications (request made by counsel in court record). This can lead to denial of making of such applications or misinterpretation of the nature of such applications

  • Meetings of one party with the judge prior to hearing

  • Judges and prosecutors putting leading questions to defendants to prevent them from presenting exhaustive evidence or challenging the evidence presented against them

  • Not giving equal opportunities to all parties to a case to present their positions in the manner they wish

  • Judges or court officers such as registrar requesting monies to be personally deposited as rewards for judgments

  • Not disqualifying themselves from hearing cases when there are relationships or previous orders showing partiality

  • Attempting to settle cases out of court at the mediation of the presiding judge of the court before whom the case is being tried

  • Judge obtaining files only from one side so that he is aware of case only from one side

  • Judge taking the role of the prosecutor during trial

  • Magistrates not observing rules relating to medical examinations of torture victims thereby paving way for police to take part in corrupt practices

  • Making judicial orders for remand without persons being produced before a magistrate

  • Despite common knowledge of police corruption and dishonesty, magistrates tend to believe police versions of cases

  • Partiality towards police and other authorities as against other citizens

  • Judges and their family members keeping links with undesirable circles

  • Failure to apply international human rights law despite international law forming part of local law through ratification and customary law

  • Admittance of case file evidence gained through unconstitutional means and in violation of human rights

  • Ethnic, racial, gender or religious bias of a judge

  • Judges proceeding through cases without giving fair hearings to all parties

  • Creating obstacles to lawyers from one party to discharge their obligations

  • Judges taking part in court auctions

  • Judges manipulating the auction process in favor of their friends, relatives or those who have paid bribes

  • Ignoring the recommendations of international human rights bodies in favor of the executive authority

  • Subscribing to the political view even if the challenge is on a constitutional right

  • Judges hearing retrial cases abuse their powers and reverse cases without proper basis

C. II. Other acts that contribute to corruption

  • Delays in adjudication process

  • Violating the principle of having cases in open court and using more secretive methods

  • Threats and executions of judges who are not corrupt

  • Lower court abusing their powers to subvert the appeal process and the powers of summons

  • Unnecessarily loading the court trial role by fixing more cases than what the court can hear

  • Charging particularly the poor over and over again on the same charge with the view to harass and intimidate the persons

  • Prosecutors abusing their prosecutorial powers to prosecute those who should not be prosecuted or not prosecuting those who should be prosecuted

  • The prosecutor's function being exercised by the police who tend to abuse the process for earning money or are not competent to prosecute properly

  • Creating pressure for disposals by higher court by setting targets which are impossible to achieve. This often leads to unfair dismissal of cases

  • Excessive interruption of trial in disfavored party's case

  • Use of previous personal history or criminal record in the trial of new case

  • Lack of consistency in rules relating to granting of bail and this leads to abuse

  • Lack of efforts to pursue those who evade court after getting bail for corrupt reasons

  • Exclusions of parts of complaints and investigating parts of complaints, excluding other crimes on the part of the accused

  • Judges being placed closer to localities where they have properties and residences

  • Allowing judges to continue in the same stations for long periods of time

  • Criminally investigating essentially civil matters

  • Despite the existence of laws, not creating investigation authorities to investigate such crimes, thereby preventing prosecution

  • Biased selection of expert witnesses

  • Bringing unfair actions against judges without any real basis in order to assist friends or to intimidate judges

  • Due to limitations in the law, judges being unable to proceed to hear cases even in serious crimes and the police and the prosecutors can use this for corrupt gain

  • Ineffective confiscation processes of monies or properties obtained through corruption

  • Bargaining about judgments with the view that judicial officers can benefit from making orders

  • Obstructing the enforcement and execution of judicial orders

  • Larger political and social forces that obstruct the independence of the judiciary and compel judges to give orders not on the basis of evidence but on the basis of pressure

C. III. Supervisory and preventive mechanisms

  • Lack of public audits of the properties of judicial functionaries

  • Absence of independent investigation mechanism to investigate cases involving police torture to monitor all aspects of application on such matters

  • Failure of bodies that have power over appointment, promotion, transfer and disciplinary control over judges

  • Absence of transparency in dealing with complaints against judges

  • Absence of public expression on these issues

D. Consequences

D. I. To litigants

  • Unjust judgments

  • Leads to successive and lengthy appeals

  • People giving up the desire to pursue their cases in courts

  • Denial of justice for victims

  • People with grievances resorting to direct and indirect forms of violence

D. II. To the society

  • Creating disillusionment and demoralization among citizens, including lawyers

  • Development of a corrupt mentality in some lawyers

  • Gives rise to 'parallel legal systems'

  • People favoring violence and force, including the use of criminal elements, in dispute settlement, over the court and legal procedures, undermining the rule of law

  • Aggrieved persons may take to lynching

  • Causing a state of chaos, violence and crime to exist within a country, thereby destroying the foundations of a civilized nation and hampering the nation's development

  • Creating a culture of impunity by placing human rights violators far from the reach of human rights victims, far from justice

  • Creating loss of memory of law on issues such as constitutionality and legality

  • Breeds and cultivates corruption in all other sectors of society

  • Creating a situation of utter hopelessness, resignation and cynicism as well as a fear psychosis

  • Weakening peoples' power which should exist under the constitution and by way of other rights

  • Marginalization of minorities and weaker sections of society, who are denied many rights and justice

  • Impairs or destroys the predictability of law, public confidence in courts and judges, other institutions and the state itself

  • Creates tyranny

  • Bringing up of new generations without any practical understanding of justice

  • Displacing the reason for the existence of courts, therefore destroying the separation of powers and creating authoritarianism

  • Failure to attract persons with principles and quality to become judicial officers

  • The weakening of the state and its credibility before the international community

E. Recommendations

E. I. Direct recommendations for improving the judicial system

Separation of powers

  • The separation of the judiciary from the executive should be the basis on which all rules relating to the judiciary should be developed

  • The executive shall not decide which judges have sit to hear a particular case

  • The legislature shall not reverse a judicial decision with retrospective effect

  • The legislature shall not invade the domain of the judiciary by pronouncing judgments such as a bill of a attainder

  • There should legal protection of the independence of judges and this protection should include sanctions against interference in the judicial matters

  • There should be an adequate budget for the judiciary and this should be manages by the judiciary itself (not by the executive).

  • To have independent committee on judicial appointments, transfer, which should include reputed academics and others

Remuneration, discipline, infrastructure

  • The higher judiciary¡¦s relationship with lower judiciary must be just, coercion must not be used in such dealings and fairness must prevail

  • Among the judges of superior courts there must be respect for their peers and the chief among them must not be allowed to bully the rest or use coercion against any

  • In the operation of such bodies that have power of appointment, promotion, transfer and disciplinary control of judges, all members must have equal rights to participate and no coercion must be used internally or by external forces to prevent any member from performing their duties

  • The formation of cliques among judges with the view to get unfair advantages for themselves should be treated as misconduct and such behavior should be discouraged by appropriate punishments

  • Judges must behave towards all lawyers in a courteous manner, affording to all the professional treatment that they are entitled to. Bullying of lawyers by judges, including superior court judges should be treated as misconduct and be subjected to appropriate punishments

  • It is imperative to provide infrastructure support by rationalizing the delivery system of justice by introducing electronic device for recording evidences, for creating communication channel in consonance with modern technology

  • Judicial officers¡¦ salary and benefits shall be rationalized so that persons being physically fit and mentally alert with unquestionable integrity can be inducted as judicial officers, without discriminating against persons with disabilities

  • Retirement age of the judicial officers shall be enhanced to international standards and adequate measures should be taken so that they do not undertake or opt any office of profit for a period of ten years immediately after the date of retirement

  • Judicial officers should have obligation to the society in consonance with the aspiration of individuals and requirements of the society

  • Judicial office shall not be abolished while there is a substantive holder

  • Judicial salaries shall not be reduced; salaries of all judges should be charged on the consolidated fund

  • There should be development of international standards relating to the retirement age of judges

  • In all judgments the reasons for the judgments should be given

  • The judges should be made to declare their assets before appointments and review them periodically

  • Avoid protocol duties for attendance on politicians and dignitaries by the judicial officers that hampers the effective and efficient performance of the judicial functions

  • There should be periodical evaluation of judges¡¦ performance by a competence body.

  • Judges should not have any political affiliations

  • The times of court sittings must be fixed and if judges violate this rule there should be ways to punish the judges on the basis of violation discipline. Where there is a breach of time limits the reasons should be recorded.

  • Provisions should be made for the judge to live within his jurisdiction. Such measures as house telephone and other facilities should be provided, including education for the children

  • Management and safe custody of court records must be under the responsibility of the judge

  • Judges must not be made to do clerical duties other than what is strictly required for performance of judicial functions

  • There should be regular review of the performance of judges, and the report should be made public

  • Transparency of the actions of court staff must be ensured

  • Bench fixing (judge shopping, forum shopping) should be completely eliminated and any allegation of interference of bench fixing should be treated as a serious breach of discipline

  • Judges should not treat witnesses in a contemptuous manner in court, all witnesses should be treated with respect

  • The accused should not be brought to court in a manner that violates their rights and the judges should take special steps to ensure respect for them.

  • Judges should promptly record the complaints of detainees against the authorities

  • There should be adequate protection for the security of judges

  • Transfer and disciplinary control of judges should be made legally challengeable by any judge or member of the bar who feels unfairly treated

  • All trial judges should be elected among lawyers of good standing of the same territorial jurisdiction and this should not leave any room for politicization of such actions

  • Proper values and a bias for integrity and human rights should be cultivated deeply and meaningfully in judges training, law schools and even earlier on

  • There should be record-tracking of the candidates for judges in the selection process including integrity, capability and also human rights record and background

  • Regular examination of judges¡¦ quality of judgments

  • Where there are different opinions of trial judges they should record their reasons in writing

  • Transfer and promotion schemes for judges of inferior courts should be formulated strictly taking into consideration their seniority and their grades unless for grave personal needs the individual judges opt otherwise

  • Judges should exclude government policy for their consideration when they make their judgment

  • Appropriate punishment should be provided for proven intentional perjury

  • Allowing international/universal jurisdiction of human rights violation to domestic courts

  • No judge whether that of the Superior Court of Record or the Court of First Instance shall accept any office that requires the performance of any functions or duties other than that of a judicial nature

Procedural issues

  • To remove constraints on the judicial system which hamper the judiciary from performing its role satisfactorily

  • Over burdening of judicial officers shall be rationalized

  • Lacuna in the law shall be removed by necessary legislation

  • Adequate co-ordination amongst investigating agency, prosecution agency and judiciary shall be setup

  • Criminal justice law must be reformed to avoid the avenues that may be available at present for corrupt practices

  • The practice of removing of prosecutors when regimes changes take place should be discontinued; the prosecution function should be exercised by a permanent set up. There should be security of tenure for prosecutors.

  • The prosecutors who are handling trial should not be discontinued before the trials are concluded in a way to adversely affect justice.

  • Appeal should always be available from all decisions so that any form of corruption in the courts of first instance can be appealed from

  • The delays in justice being one of the primary reasons allowing corruption in legal reforms priority must be given in eliminating delays in adjudication.

  • Exploiting of delays in original and appeal matters at so much to the detriment of justice that urgent national plan should be developed to deal with this issue.

  • Speed up the appeal processes so as not to cause injustice

  • Rationalize procedural laws to prevent possibilities of corruption at the ministerial levels of staff who could influence judicial decisions

  • Provide for pronouncement of judgments as early as possible after the final hearing possibly within a week or so.

  • To establish at the international level lower standards of evidence to prove graft and corruption for administrative and criminal actions

  • All countries should sign and ratify the ICCPR and its optional protocols;

  • There should be separation between arresting officers and interrogating officers in criminal cases in order to enable objectivity in investigations. For example, a police officer who has tortured a victim and got a confession may get a colleague who is known to him to perform the interrogation and thereby the torture victim may lose the opportunity to express actually what has taken place

  • On allegations of torture and gross human rights violations by the police there should be independent teams which is not under the influence of the perpetrators to do the investigation

  • Practices such as taking signatures on blank papers and other forms of manipulation should be prevented by law and such documents should not be admitted as evidence

  • To eliminate all police-generated documents from being admitted as evidence

  • Every judicial proceeding should be electronically recorded and also video taped and after trial the concerned parties should have access to the files

  • On human rights issues by state actors there should be a shift of the burden of proof on the alleged perpetrators, however the human rights of the perpetrators should be respected as in the case of other accused

  • Publicize all decisions of courts to the public

  • Human rights awareness programs for judges is crucial

  • Preliminary remedies for the victims of human rights abuses should be available

  • Interrogation centre should be a place that is not under the control of the police or the prosecutors

  • Statutes of limitations on human rights abuses shall be abolished

  • Special constitutional remedies, no time limit should be laid down on applications concerning human rights abuses

  • On issues of violations of human rights and on allegations of corruption retrial should be available

  • Appointment of prosecutors should be through an independent body and prosecutors should have supervisory role on investigations into crimes

  • The constitution of benches should be done by a process which is fair and through judicial consensus

  • Establish separate competent forensic science departments with necessary facilities

  • Interference with the official documents and registers such as register of detainees etc. and also court records should be treated as a serious breach of discipline

  • Reform the medico-legal system

  • The constitutional court should have jurisdiction to review cases that are in violation of the constitution

  • The state actors should comply with court orders and there should avenues for punishment of an state actors who do not carry out court orders

  • International forensic science body should be formed

  • A law be introduced to oblige the use of forensic science bodies

  • In relation to all human rights violation the law should criminalize all violations torture, disappearances, and provide appropriate remedies for such violations. Further, countries should respect their international obligations under treaties and put into effect the views expressed by such bodies as the human rights committee and recommendations of treaty bodies such as CAT committee, working group on forced disappearances, CEDAW committee and the like

  • During trials of foreigners and also for locals who speak different dialects than that officially used in court in lower courts and also superior courts there should be interpreters provided, so that the under-trial prisoner understands and follows the proceedings and is able to give necessary instructions to his counsel. Foreigners particularly should be given access to justice mechanisms, if necessary by providing free legal aid at the instance of state and/or judiciary

  • There should be a department established for compensation of victims, particularly of human rights violation

  • In trials of foreigners the court should respect the concerns of the foreigner¡¦s home nation ¡V considering the legal system of the foreign nation in terms of the execution of the judgment

  • There should be an absolute prohibition of double jeopardy

  • Contempt of court law should be enacted, laying down strict limits for the operation of this law. The liberal views on this issue which have been adopted in developed jurisdictions should be included in such law. Under no circumstances should a judge/s before whom contempt of court is alleged to have been committed sit as judges in adjudicating the issue in the first instance or in appeals

  • The media freedom for reporting and commenting on judicial process should be fully respected. The freedom of expression to expose the limitations of a justice system by writing or other means such as caricatures/cartoons and by electronic means should be respected

Supervisory mechanisms/institutions

  • To check and arrest the continuing and increasing pollution and corruption in the judicial system vis a vis a social audit is necessary by appointing ombudsman from persons having highest degree of integrity and honesty and/or by appointing a judicial collegiums by the highest or apex court of the country

  • Establishment of national institutions on human rights matters can be useful for resolving of some of these problems.

  • Provide for a forum to make complaints against judicial officers and dispose the complaints in a transparent manner with opportunity to the complainants

  • There should be an independent appoint body composed of personalities of different sectors of society and appointment should be made on the basis of professional known professional qualifications and experience and judges¡¦ training curriculum should have a strong ethics and human rights component

  • A disciplinary control body of judges should be easily accessible for people who wish to make complaints

  • There should be an independent body to look into the assets of existing judges. The report of the body should be made public. If any wealth has been accumulated in a judges name beyond his means it should be confiscated

  • Prior to the appointment of the chief justice there should be the possibility of the public to air their views on the appointment that are reviewed by a competent independent body

  • Public representation before the appointment of superior court judges

  • There should be an international support programme for victims of human rights violations

  • There should be a national legal aid programme that is substantial and sufficiently financed

E. II. Lobbying and movement efforts

  • It is essential to develop movements for justice reforms

  • It is necessary to identify and focus on the role of judicial officers in promoting and protecting human rights within the ambit of judicial system

  • Educate on protection of fundamental rights and human rights has to be engendered so that it permits the culture of justice jurisprudence

  • In spite of many protections provided in the judicial system, several people specially the poor and the vulnerable section of the society still face many violations of their basic human rights in the judicial mechanism while this violations are most often by the police and the jail authorities, the respectability of overseeing these authorities and bringing them to book by ensuring correct procedures is in the hands of judicial officers who are the custodian of rule of law in the society

  • Establishment of para-legals throughout the country at most or at least at the local and provincial levels

  • National people¡¦s movements for elimination of delays in adjudication should receive priority in the civil and human rights organizations

  • Establish an international network of fact-finding and lawyer exchanges

  • To establish or join an international association of lawyers for human rights

  • To establish an international mechanism to check on and rule upon complaints of highest courts¡¦ judgments affecting human rights and judicial corruption

  • Organizing education and awareness for people for proper participation on these matters

  • Education and awareness programs for police officers and lawyers

  • Peoples¡¦ movement should provide opportunity for education of people on judiciary related issues

  • A peoples¡¦ award giving body should be created to recognize judges and justices who are able to eliminate delays and who show great integrity and independence

  • Create a list of lawyers and judges and others who have sacrificed their lives for the cause of fair administration of justice and human rights

Participants who attended the consultation:

Mr. M Enayetur Rahim (Bangladesh)
Mr. Nazmul Haque Shah Chowdhury (Bangladesh)
Mr. Abdus Samad (Bangladesh)
Dr. Lao Mong Hay (Cambodia)

Ms. Li Yujie (China)
Mr. Ma Jiafu (China)
Ms. Sun Weiping (China)
Mr. Zhang Pinze (China)
Mr. John Joseph Clancey (Hong Kong)

Mr. Justice D. K. Basu (India)
Mr. Jijo Paul (India)
Mr. Taufik Basari (Indonesia)

Mr. Rudi Rizki (Indonesia)

Mr. Papang Hidayat (Indonesia)

Mr. Rex Jesus Mario A. Fernandez (Philippines)
Mr. Ricardo Sunga III (Philippines)
Mr. Sanjeewa Weeravikrama (Sri Lanka)
Dr. Jayantha de Almeda Gunaratne (Sri Lanka)
Ms. Kishali Pinto Jayawardhane (Sri Lanka)

Mr. Mi-hwa Chung (South Korea)
Mr. Tewarit Chotichompupong (Thailand)
Ms. Sor. Rattanamanee Polkla (Thailand)
Ms. Puttanee Kangkun (Thailand)
Mr. Surachai Trongngam (Thailand)

Asian Human Rights Commission