‘Integrity’ most important
for new judicial members

Judicial Commission (KY) candidates must have clean track records, professional integrity, a deep
knowledge and understanding of Indonesian law and the judicial system and embrace sound moral and ethic values, officials and scholars say.

“In 2005 we tasked the KY with reforming and democratizing Indonesian judicial procedures that were systemically and structurally wrong,” current KY chairman Busyro Muqoddas said Wednesday at a discussion on the selection mechanism for KY members.

The selection committee has officially opened candidacy registration for seven posts for the 2010-2015 KY from May 17 until June 18 this year.

Busyro said that the ideal composition of KY members would be two former judges, two law scholars, two law practitioners and one public figure.

“The committee has to determine the ideal combination of characteristics for the seven members,” Judhi Kristanti, a human resources consultant, said.

She added that it was also important to try to predict their potential decisions and project how they would work in extreme conditions in order to prevent judicial corruption.

“The critical problem in our judicial system is corruption, therefore the members have to completely understand the factual judicial system,” a former judge for the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court, Maruarar Siahaan, said. He said it was also important they harbor sound ethics and morals so that they would not be tempted to enter corrupt practises.

Sidharta, a law scholar, added that the committee could assess the moral and professional integrity of former judges applying for the posts by analyzing past verdicts they had made.

“The committee has to assess actual profiles and review the track records of each candidate and verify them instead of assessing normative criteria, such as having at least 15 years of experience in law and believing in God,” Judhi added.

Asep Iwan Irawan, an academic and a former judge, suggested the KY check candidates’ track records by analyzing their lifestyles.

“Check their wealth, where they live, their family, their educational background, their children’s education, their opinions and idealisms, consistency in deciding and taking a stand on something, as well as their activities after they retired from judicial service,” Asep said.

“The challenge for us is how to find 14 reliable candidates in such a short time,” Luhut M. Pangaribuan, a member of the selection committee said, adding that the KY expected to finish the selection process by the third week of June.

He said the committee would go “door-to-door” to universities and law communities to find the candidates and check their backgrounds.

The committee will choose 14 names and then propose them to the President. The list eventually will be sent to the House of Representatives where legislators will choose seven final names to sit as members of KY. (ipa)

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