Judges Expect More Government Oppression

Judiciary sources said the pro-government Supreme Judiciary Council and the Justice Ministry intend to withdraw judiciary immunity of a number of judges who participated in the extraordinary meeting of the Judges Union’s General Assembly on 16 December. The procedure prepares to put judges under investigation on charges of abusing judiciary institutions.
 In fact, these oppressive measures come under the government punitive policy against judges who revealed ballot rigging in the parliamentary polls. Sources added the step is designated to curb judges who press for enacting the union-sanctioned bill of judiciary power void of the amendments made by the Higher Judiciary Council. Moreover, the decision follows the support of all judges for the four justices who were previously referred to investigation.
On his part, Mahmud Meky, one of the four under-investigation justices, expected the council to use all patterns of pressure and intimidation to stifle calls for judiciary independency. He indicated that the interview of the council’s chairman with a newspaper reflected this determination where he directed accusations for reformist judges.
Meky said the council stance to judges is astonishing. When judges push for reform of the council and its independency, the council opposes these efforts assuming the role of the government patron. Meky added the union’s GA in which judges uncovered instances of ballot rigging is the main driving force behind this government escalation.
Meky, in addition, underlined the significant role of media and civil society in supporting judges during their battle.