JUDICIARY I.docx - JUDICIARY I The Role of Judiciary and its importance The Judiciary is one of the organs of the state apart from the Legislature and

JUDICIARY I.docx - JUDICIARY I The Role of Judiciary and...

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JUDICIARY I The Role of Judiciary and its importance The Judiciary is one of the organs of the state apart from the Legislature and the Executives, and plays a vital role in the functioning of the state. The Rule of Law requires the Judiciary to be independent of the other organs so as to allow the judiciary to be impartial and to carry out its functions to the best of its abilities without interference and pressure. The judges are said to be the very personification of the law. The judicial function embodies the dispassionate application of evenhandedness, integrity and the rule of law. Judges resolves disputes, punish offenders, and where there is no jury determine guilt. They are the custodians of the law, guardians of its values and sentinels of justice and fair play. The role of the judge is fundamental to the common law, the centrifuge force of the judicial functions drives the legal system both in theory and in practice. The influence of a judge cannot be overstated. Professor John Griffiths argues that “Judges… cannot be politically neutral, because they are placed in positions where they are required to make choices which are sometimes presented to them and often presented to them as determination of where public interest lies.” Suggesting that the courts are simply not capable of being politically independent due to the nature of the cases they must judge is an argument that many academics accept to be true. Hence one could legitimately argue that UK courts have been politicised. Importance of Judicial Independence and its Constitutional implication Being one of the organs of the state it is an understood fact of the importance of the Judiciary in governing the state. Therefore, its independence is crucial to its performance in both personal and institutional/Constitutional level. o Personal Independence A Judge is expected to be personally independent in the sense that they are to decide cases purely on the strict application of the law and the evidence presented, irrespective of personal preference or any interest on the outcome. Judicial impartiality is a fundamental component of justice and essential to due process. Where a judge is found to be biased then the judge should be disqualified from presiding over the said proceeding where the judge’s impartiality might reasonably be questioned. This means that a judge is not allowed to sit in a case where the judge can reasonably be said to be biased or impartial.
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The test of apparent bias is objective, where a reasonable observer, having considered the facts concludes that there was a real possibility that the judge was biased. If a judge is found to be biased in a case, then the judge must recuse (excuse) themselves or be barred from presiding over the said case.
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  • Fall '15
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