Judges Matter intends to enhance judicial governance, which we define as appointments as well as conduct, thereby strengthening the rule of law in Africa.
Judges Matter says that good appointments make for good judges; good judges who are trained and supported make for good judgments; and good judgments take forward the rights and governance framework, develop and strengthen the rule of law, and contribute to social justice.
Transparency and advocacy in the appointments process and conduct of the judiciary will result in strengthening the JSC as a system. That will result in better judges, and thus better judgments.
Factors affecting the appointments process include briefing patterns, acting appointments, poor candidates, inconsistent questioning, inadequate application of criteria, and a clumsy application of the transformation criteria in the constitution.
The Judges Matter campaign continues to achieve remarkable interest and engagement in the judicial appointment process, as evidenced by high levels of social media engagement, and interest in the livestreaming of videos. Two judges have challenged articles written about them on the Judges Matter website. Whilst this has prompted us to re-evaluate our editorial policy, it does demonstrate that people are aware of the campaign and care about what it has to say.
We have conducted a workshop on acting judicial appointments with civil society stakeholders, and are aiming to prepare a draft policy document on acting appointments to present to the heads of court.
Our work on the Liliongwe Principles, has significantly expanded the regional footprint of this aspect of our work. We are looking to continue work to monitor and assist in the implementation of the Principles.
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