Many judges and prosecutors have been impeached so far by the vetting process, but what catches the eye is the growing number of chief justices which are being affected by this process. Two days ago, the Independent Evaluation Commission has impeached chief justice of the District Court of Saranda, Alltun Çela, after he failed his assessment on all three vetting criteria: assets, moral integrity and professionalism. This is not at all a positive thing if we think about the fact that these are the people who are supposed to deliver justice and who decide on the fate of many people who address the court. Had it been the only case, then we could consider it to be sporadic, but it is not the case because in a very short period of time, there have also been other chief justices who have been impeached by the Independent Evaluation Commission.
Here we can mention the case of Admir Belisha, chief justice of the Korça District Court who was impeached at the end of last year due to numerous problems that the commission had identified with his assets and several inappropriate contacts that he had during the course of his work. Meanwhile, the vetting process has also led to the impeachment of the Korça Civil Appeals Court chief justice, Entela Prifti. The judge in question was also penalized for failing to make an accurate declaration of her assets. On the other hand, a few weeks before, it was another woman, namely Vlora Appeals Court chief justice, Alma Liçaj, who was affected by the vetting process.
The judge in question did not seem to be able to justify her assets and had made a false declaration. The list of the chief justices who have been removed from the justice system as a result of the vetting process concludes with Berat District Court chief justice, Agron Valva. According to the Independent Evaluation Commission, all of these judges have filed false declarations of their assets accumulated during the years that they’ve been part of the justice system.
LIST OF IMPEACHED CHIEF JUSTICES
8 January 2019
Saranda District Court chief justice, Alltun Çela
21 December 2018
Korça District Court chief justice, Admir Belishta
21 December 2018
Berat District Court chief justice, Agron Valva, Agron Valva
15 November 2018
Korça Civil Appeals Court chief justice, Entela Prifti
10 October 2018
Vlora Appeals Court chief justice, Alma Liçaj
Supreme Court chief justice is the only one not to be affected by the process
Supreme Court chief justice, Xhezair Zaganjori seems to be the only chief justice so far who has not been affected by the vetting process. However, the judge in question received lots of criticism by the Independent Evaluation Commission for problems with his assets. But in the end, he was reconfirmed in his post and was allowed to continue to be the head of the country’s Supreme Court.
Constitutional Court chief justice, another “victim” of the process
Constitutional Court chief judges can be considered as another “victim” of the current vetting process. So, while Bashkim Dedja managed to pass the screening process conducted by the Independent Evaluation Commission, the International Monitoring Operation recommended Public Commissioners to send this decision to the Special Appeal College for revision. In the end, the College in question decided to impeach the judge.