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CENTRE OF EXPERTISE IN JUDICIARY @ TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL ROMANIA

4

introduction

This Guide provides judicial officials and decision-makers with a reference framework for consolidating

integrity within the judiciary and for judicial reform, where this is required. It also provides civil society

with a set of benchmarks against which they can hold their national judiciaries accountable and to

help drive their advocacy efforts.

The

judiciary

can be defined, in the broad sense, as the system of courts of law and the people who

operate within it, as well as, the prosecution service and the people who operate within it, irrespective

of their formal status in a certain jurisdiction.

Over the past decades, corruption has proven to be the invisible enemy of modern democracies. Bad

governance, abuses of state power, endemic corruption and the inability of poor and marginalized to

remedy injustices are threatening peace, security and sustainable development all around the globe.

The judiciary itself has faced corruption in two different ways – corruption of its own members, and

detecting, prosecuting, adjudicating and sanctioning corruption by others.

Functioning judiciaries can effectively safeguard the rule of law and limit the devastating societal

impacts of corruption. For this reason the Transparency International movement’s global strategic

priority is to recognize the urgent need for robust judicial systems to prevent and punish corruption.

A judiciary committed to integrity, independence and accountability is more likely to listen to the

marginalized, uphold individual rights, and sanction corruption than those who are stealing public

money to enrich themselves.

Building on the already existing international consensus, this Guide references several international,

regional and global standards and principles to ensure a broad application to a variety of judiciary

models. It also builds on Transparency International`s 2007 ‘Global Corruption Report: Corruption

and Judicial Systems’ and its accompanying ‘Diagnostic Checklist for Assessing Safeguards against

Judicial Corruption

1

, as well as on Transparency International’s National Integrity System paradigm

2

.

The Guide also circulated among reputable TI and non TI experts and institutional partners to whom

we would like to thank for their invaluable contribution.

As such, this Guide synthetises existing standards and principles regarding the composition

of judiciaries and the conduct of its members to encourage independence, transparency and

accountability. Annex I provides a detailed inventory of international documents in which the principles

and standards provided by this Guide have their roots.

Bringing to fruition the existing TI knowledge, this Guide is the initial step of a broader TI global

initiative on the ‘Integrity, Independence and Accountability of the Judiciary’, through a dedicated

Centre of Expertise. Building on the experience gained by TI in many countries, as well as on the

expertise of its individual members or other organisations, the Centre aims at further developing a

second generation of practical tools and approaches to facilitate the work in this sector and support

the existing advocacy efforts.

Our approach is to engage a diverse spectrumof actors - judicial practitioners, executive and legislative

officials, representatives of international donors, leaders of the business community, civil society and

regular citizens - at both the national and international level, to collectively demand change within the

judiciary and to hold it accountable for successes and failures in sanctioning corruption. Annex II of

the Guide provides an inventory of the work done by TI Chapters with regard to the judiciary, while

Annex III contains a non-exhaustive inventory of the international judicial stakeholders.

1. Transparency International (2007). Global Corruption Report 2007: Corruption and Judicial systems.

http://www.transparency.org/whatwedo/pub/global_corruption_report_2007_corruption_and

judicial_systems

Transparency International Diagnostic Checklist (2007). Diagnostic Checklist for Assessing Safeguards against Judicial

Corruption, Combating Corruption in Judicial Systems: Advocacy Toolkit, pages 23-32.

http://www.u4.no/recommended-

reading/transparency-international-advocacy-toolkit-combating-corruption-in-judicial-systems/

2.

http://www.transparency.org/whatwedo/nis