The creation of a Judicial Council, a new justice oversight body in Vaud, continues to be debated. Its composition, its role, the loss of control of the Grand Council fueled a morning of intense discussions in Parliament on Tuesday. A third debate will be necessary to put this novelty under the roof, which is already in force in the other French-speaking cantons.
The first debate, two weeks ago, had already been long and lively, the second, on Tuesday morning, lasted more than two hours. Several amendments were introduced to modify the State Council project, which itself had already been revised and corrected in the Grand Council commission and later in the first debate. Also remember that he was immediately criticized by the UDC, the radical left and the Free.
This time, the most frontal attacks were carried out by two elected PLR rebels, Philippe Vuillemin and Pierrette Roulet-Grin. They were particularly concerned about the Great Council’s loss of oversight and powers.
There is also space for former magistrates
The first fiercely defended the fact that Parliament “continues to be the master of the game” in the election of the members of the Judicial Council. He proposed an amendment intended to prevent the Grand Council from simply ratifying a list of members proposed by the judicial authorities, before withdrawing it.
In fact, several deputies convinced him that his amendment was superfluous, since the law provides that if a member does not please the Grand Council, the latter can remove him by election by ballot and by an absolute majority. Parliament’s Legal Affairs Thematic Committee can then put forward another candidate.
The composition of this new administrative and disciplinary oversight body for cantonal justice was also discussed again. Radical left deputy Hadrien Buclin proposed an amendment to boost the appointment of a human rights expert to the Council. He was turned down by one vote.
Mr. Vuillemin proposed an amendment to give the possibility to former magistrates, retired, to be able to access this Council, basically invoking their free time, their distance and, therefore, a certain wisdom. His proposal was accepted by 67 yes, 54 no and 7 abstentions.
“Avoid paper confusion”
Mr. Vuillemin and Mrs. Roulet-Grin then wanted to defend “exceptional” monitoring visits to judicial offices by the Thematic Committee on Legal Affairs. The idea was largely dismissed by the plenary, deputies criticized a “recomplexification” of the system that “would empty the new law and structure of its substance”.
The State Councilor responsible for the dossier, Christelle Luisier, also warned of a “confusion of roles”. The idea of the project is to simplify the current system and not return the same powers of this Judicial Council to the Grand Council, she said in substance. “You can’t have a hybrid system,” she said.
The result of a long process started in 2015, the new “fully independent” body must guarantee the separation of powers, avoiding as much as possible the intrusion of politics in the supervision of justice, according to the government. The future nine Council members will also notify Parliament when electing the cantonal judges, the public prosecutor and their deputies.
It’s up to the people to decide
The new body will be composed of two members of the cantonal court, a magistrate of first instance, two members of the Public Ministry, a former president of the Vaud lawyers, a lawyer and two members, instead of three, of the “civil society” proposed by the Great Advice. All will be elected for five years by the latter and re-elected once, among candidates proposed by the authorities or institutions concerned.
As some amendments have been accepted, a third and final debate is necessary. The project must, without surprise, pass through the ramp. If it is accepted by the deputies, it will have to go through a popular vote, probably in September 2022, because it involves a modification of the Vaud Constitution. The entry into force could therefore take place in January 2023.
This article was automatically published. source: ats