New Justices Will Be Nominated “In Due Course” – Ringrose

Sanctus – Chancellor Ethan Ringrose told reporters today at the installation of Georgina Reding as the nation’s newest, and first female, Chief Justice, that the now three vacant seats on the Supreme Court will be filled “in due course”, while refusing to comment on the delay in the nominations.

With Reding’s elevation to Chief Justice, a whole third of the Court bench is vacant, with replacements for now retired justices Patrice and Woodhouse yet to be announced. A spokesperson for the Chancellor later said that with the House of Deputies and the Senate on their summer break until September, and the Court on its recess until October, there was “no urgent rush” to announce the nominations and that the government was “lucky to have so many qualified jurists to give their consideration to”.

The relaxed approach by the government to the nomination of Supreme Court justices has been criticised by members of the opposition, with acting SCP Leader Julie Christintim saying the delay “is two fingers from this government to the constitutionally co-equal branch of government that is the federal judicary”. In an unprecedented comment, recently retired Justice Trevor Woodhouse, who was a guest at Reding’s installation, said he “hope[d] the government filled the seats quickly as the wheels of justice turn slowly enough without the bottleneck of a diminished court”. This was seen widely by reporters present as a veiled swipe at Ringrose and his government colleagues.

While typically the Secretary for Justice would announce nominees for Justice in the House of Deputies chamber itself, it has released nominations by press release in the past when the House was on recess. However, sources who work for Senators said that it didn’t matter when the Secretary announced the nominees, or where, they would still have to wait for the Senate to return from summer recess in September to hear the nominations, “so in that sense, there is no urgent rush”, the source concluced.

LOUISA SOUTER, Crime & Justice Correspondent

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