Yesterday, the “Independent Commission for Evaluating Integrity of Candidates for Members of Self-governing Bodies of Judges and Prosecutors” (Pre-Vetting Commission) convened its inaugural meeting. The Commission selected Herman von Hebel as its Chair via secret vote.
As per Law 26/2022 the evaluation will include among others a declaration of wealth from candidates to the self-governing bodies and a declaration of their close persons; the collection and verification of data; public hearings; a decision by the Commission on the compliance of candidates with the integrity criteria; and an optional appeals procedure to the judiciary.
“All members are eager to start the evaluation process. We are strongly committed to ensuring an effective and fair evaluation process for these pivotal positions in the Moldovan justice system, and we hope that the candidates ultimately elected to the judges’ and prosecutors’ self-governing bodies will bring the change necessary to continue implementation of reforms in the Republic of Moldova,” commented Chair Herman von Hebel.
The Commission is currently working on all necessary preparations for the evaluation, including the drafting of rules of procedure, the design of a declaration form for assets and for listing close persons as foreseen by Law 26/2022, as well as adequate staffing of its Secretariat. Until the Secretariat is operational, its basic functions will be ensured by an interim team of experts. Once preparations allow for the evaluation to start, the Commission will inform the respective candidates, will send out the declaration forms, and will subsequently conduct the evaluation as foreseen by the Law and the Commission’s rules of procedure. It is thus expected that the evaluation will start during May. As foreseen by the Law, candidates for membership of the Superior Council of Magistracy and the Superior Council of Prosecutors will be evaluated as a priority over other candidates. The overall evaluation process may last until December 2022.
The Pre-Vetting Commission consists of six members appointed by Parliament, three of which were recommended by international development partners providing technical assistance to the Republic of Moldova, namely:
* Herman von Hebel (The Netherlands)
* Victoria Henley (USA)
* Nadejda Hriptievschi (Moldova)
* Vitalie Miron (Moldova)
* Tatiana Răducanu (Moldova)
* Nona Tsotoria (Georgia)