Dutch judiciary: an example for UkraineDecember 15, 2015
The judiciary reform is currently carried out in Ukraine. European Union Advisory Mission to Ukraine (EUAM) actively promotes these processes in order to make the Ukrainian legal system more transparent and efficient.
A study visit of the Ukrainian judicial system representatives to The Netherlands was organized last week by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of The Netherlands, The Netherlands Enterprise Agency with support of EUAM. The Ukrainian delegation included the representatives of the Supreme Court of Ukraine, of the State Judicial Administration of Ukraine and the High Council of Justice.
“There are many areas where exposure to another system could be useful for the Ukrainian Judiciary. Even though the two systems might be quite different, certain aspects are universal in all judicial systems. Having the Ukrainian delegation interact with their Dutch counterparts and learn how these aspects are dealt with in The Netherlands, will contribute to broadening the views of the Ukrainian judiciary and facilitate the reforms in Ukraine” – Robert BOER, the Head of Administration of Justice Advisory Unit of EUAM
During the visit Ukrainian delegation headed by Valentina Simonenko, The Head of the Council of Judges of Ukraine and the Supreme Court judge, visited different institutions of the Dutch judiciary system. In particular, the Dutch Council for the Judiciary; the Dutch Foundation «Judges for Judges»; the Supreme Court; the Office of the Board of Prosecutors General; the Council of State; the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs; the District Court Central-Netherlands; the International Criminal Court and Peace Palace, which is a residence for various international judiciary institutions, including the International Court of Justice, the Permanent Court of Arbitration and many others.
The members of Ukrainian delegation together with Dutch colleagues discussed the Dutch judiciary system, tasks and responsibilities of the various judiciary institutions, the issue of financing of the Dutch judiciary system, selection, promotion and dismissal of judges, case management system, communication and public information issues, the ways of providing the unity of judiciary practice by the Supreme Court and how to coordinate these practices between the different chambers of the Supreme Court of The Netherlands and many other questions.
“The main theme of the visit, which took place under the aegis of the Supreme Court of Ukraine (SC) as part of cooperation between the SC and the EUAM and judiciary institutions of the Netherlands, is to establish communication between the judges, in particular the Supreme Court of Ukraine and the society, and the media. In addition this visit is important because the Ukrainians want to follow international standards of justice” – said the head of Ukrainian delegation Valentina Simonenko.
An important issue for Ukrainian judges was the courts` funding: “There is no basis for calculating the courts` funding in Ukraine and the procedure of funds allocation by the Ministry of Finance is unclear. In The Netherlands output financing of the courts is based on the projected amount of cases in each court. This practice can be very useful for Ukraine”, – says Ms. Simonenko.
In addition the Dutch Council for the Judiciary takes a more active role in determination of the courts` budget financing than the Council of Judges of Ukraine: “Unfortunately, the State Court Administration doesn`t pay enough attention on the role of the Council of Judges of Ukraine in this area. On the one hand judges are not always familiar with the complex budgeting processes and on the other hand SCA believes that it can make judges less operational and less independent. However, the positive experience of our colleagues shows that we need to be more involved in these processes”- said Valentine Simonenko.
The study visit to the Netherlands was very interesting and active. Many urgent and important issues were discussed. The delegation appreciated the level of organization and expressed deep gratitude to the organizers of the visit and the EUAM for the fruitful cooperation and support.
The delegation included: Ms. Valentyna Simonenko, The Head of the Council of Judges of Ukraine and the Supreme Court judge; Mr. Zenoviy Kholodniuk, The Head of the State Judicial Administration of Ukraine; Ms. Alla Lesko, Judge, Secretary of the Disciplinary Section of the High Council of Justice; Mr. Vadym Nezhura, Judge, Member of the Disciplinary Section of the High Council of Justice; Ms. Liudmyla Okhrimchuk, Judge of the Supreme Court of Ukraine; Mr. Oleh Kryvenda, Judge of the Supreme Court of Ukraine; Mr. Oleksandr Potylchak, Judge of the Supreme Court of Ukraine; Mr. Mykola Korotkevych, Judge of the Supreme Court of Ukraine; Mr. Ivan Kucheryna, Head of the staff of the Supreme Court of Ukraine; Ms. Kateryna Voronenko, the Head of the Department of Ensuring Interaction with the Mass Media and Publishing Activities of the Supreme Court of Ukraine; Ms. Liudmyla Maistrenko, the Deputy Head of the Department Providing Support to the Leadership of the Supreme Court of Ukraine, Head of the Division.
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