Role of the judiciary and its independence

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  • The Judiciary
    • Role of the Judiciary
      • Declaring Common Law
        • a great deal of law is unwritten but exists and is enforceable
          • this includes the power of the prime minister
          • Judges come to a decision on what the common law is
      • Interpreting statute law
        • laws passed by government are not always clear
          • judges come to a decision as to what the law means
      • Developing case law
        • even if the law is clear it might not be clear how it applies to certain cases
          • sets a precedent as to how this will apply in the future
    • What kinds of cases are politically important
      • Enforcing the Convention of Human rights and other rights
      • interpret the meaning of human rights laws
      • Enforce the Rule of Law
        • the Rule of law is the principle that all citizens, groups or even the government have to follow the law
      • ensure all minorities are protected equally
      • prevent the government from over stepping its power
      • interpret the law and become part of the law making process
    • How is the Judiciary independent?
      • Cant be dismissed based on decisions
        • govt. cannot apply pressure for a certain decision
      • the pay of judges are protected and guaranteed
        • Govt. cannot threaten judges with loss of pay
      • govt. or press not allowed to talk about case in progress
        • so the press of govt. cannot sway judges decision
      • Judges appointed by the Independent appointment Commission
        • No political influence can be placed into the judicary
      • Judges cant be politically active
        • this is so personal views are not influencing interpretation of law
    • why is Judicial independence so important?
      • so the rights of individuals and groups is protected from the govt.
      • it is important that govt. doesnt go beyond its legal powers
      • Independent judges are more able to protect the rule of law
      • Judges need to interpret the constitution, it is important govt. does not sway this
      • Justice cant be served if any outside group has influence on the court
      • Public opinion isnt always legal and judges should stand above public opinion
        • eg. Abu Hamaza deportation. his rights couldnt be protected but people wanted him to be deported anyway


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