Bill on courts discussed

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During its meeting on January 5, the Standing Committee on Justice convened with an attendance of 100 percent to discuss the bill on courts, and lawmakers expressed their views on the bill.

Last year, the government submitted amendments to the Law on Courts of Mongolia, Law on the Legal Status, Discipline and Responsibility of Judges, and Law on the Legal Status of Lawyers to Parliament, respectively, in order to align them with the amendments to the Constitution.

The working group in charge of preparation of the bill amended 39 articles and 223 sections, added more than 100 sections and provisions, and prepared more than 70 dissenting opinions.

Noting that the Democratic Party (DP) caucus in Parliament requested a hearing on the bill on courts, lawmaker Sh.Adishaa said, “The DP sent a request to the speaker of Parliament and chairman of the Standing Committee on Justice to hold a public hearing on the bill. The working group made many changes to the bill. No comments were received from citizens, and the bill was not reported in the media. Therefore, it is recommended to hold a public hearing. In other words, I officially state that there is no intention to block this bill. Therefore, I would like to suggest that you hold a hearing.”

“It is concluded that the decision to undermine the independence of the judiciary is made by the president, government and Parliament. As an independent institution, we must protect the judiciary. A new formula is being added to Article 75 of the bill. It is proposed that the Judiciary General Council (JGC) will convene immediately and submit a request to the Supreme Court, if the president, government or Parliament make a decision that infringes on the independence of the judiciary, attorney general or chief justice of the Supreme Court. The JGC has the responsibility to protect the independence of the judiciary. It is not implemented. Institutions are not protected when the independence of the judiciary is violated,” said Head of the working group B.Enkhbayar.

Expressing his support for the bill, Parliamentarian B.Munkhbaatar said, “It is important that citizens express their views on specific issues on social media related to the independence of the judiciary. On the other hand, an issue is raised in an organized manner, followed by a criminal case, and a lot of organized work is done before a trial.”

The head of the working group highlighted that the independence of the judiciary and the reputation of judges must be protected. “The working group discussed the issue of organized illegal influence, and judges made specific recommendations on this. The JGC has to be formally mandated and its institutions have to be protected,” he said.

Lawmaker B.Purevdorj said, “In accordance with the Constitution, governmental decisions must be considered by the government and Parliament. Recently, however, the courts have been judging collective government decisions. If an official implements the government's decision, they are arrested and detained.”

Misheel Lkhasuren