House approves two Supreme Court justices
Marguerite Afra Sapiie
The Jakarta Post
The House of Representatives' Commission III, which oversees legal affairs, confirmed on Wednesday the selection of two Supreme Court justices proposed by the Judicial Commission (KY).
The two judges, who will serve in the religious and civil chambers, were approved by all 10 political party factions after passing a fit and proper test conducted by lawmakers.
They are Abdul Manaf, former director general of the Religious Court who is set to serve with the religious chamber, and Pri Pambudi Teguh, formerly a judge with the Central Java High Court, who is to serve at the civil chamber.
Pri is the older brother of Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo.
"We approved [the two] by acclamation, especially since the Supreme Court is in need of more justices," Commission III deputy chairman Desmond J. Mahesa said on Wednesday.
The Supreme Court had requested eight judges for the country's highest court, but from the applications the Judicial Commission received, the latter only selected two candidates in June to be assessed by the House Commission III.
Desmond, a Gerindra party politician, has criticized the Judicial Commission for proposing only two candidates, saying the House consequently felt obligated to approve both.
He further said the Justice Commission tended to select candidates based only on their legal expertise then avoid their capabilities – or lack thereof – after they have started serving in the Supreme Court.
However, Desmond acknowledged the challenges in finding a candidate with both the experience and capacity to successfully serve the country’s highest court – which has been through its share of controversies in recent year. (ebf)
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