Tunisia – Tunisian Administrative Court suspends decision to dismiss 50 judges
Location: Tunis, Tunisia
Source: A24 Tunisia
Restriction: A24 subscribers
A Tunisian administrative court suspended Wednesday the presidential decree decision issued in June, by which President Kais Saied dismissed fifty judges on charges of “covering up terrorist cases”, “corruption”, and “affiliation with political parties”. The new court decision, which included fifty of the dismissed judges, requires them to return to work and resume their duties pending a decision on the origins of the cases, a process that may take months and perhaps years, according to judicial sources. The court’s decision was based on an urgent request made by the defense committee of the dismissed judges, sources added, and it is likely that the cases of the other seven judges will be resolved soon, as the accusations against them are unproven.
Soundbite (Murad Al-Masoudi-Young Judges Association):
“This dismissal decision must be halted, and the judges must return to their work until a final decision is issued, which will take time. The dismissal of about 50 judges in this urgent case has been suspended, but there are still 7 judges accused of trivial cases, to be revealed, which do not require them to be held accountable, dismissed or even considered corrupt. It was previously said that there are penal and disciplinary issues, but this is not true. No complaint has been filed against them, and therefore the President of the Administrative Court has decided to suspend the execution.”
Soundbite (Ahmed Sawab – Member of the defense committee of exempted judges):
“All conditions are suitable for sentencing, firstly because of the judicial recess in Tunisia, therefore, the head of the Administrative Court has no other files or tasks to perform. There is also the issue that most of the jurists who spoke and formed jurisprudential references in this case, confirmed that the dismissal decision issued by President Kais Saeed, violates all legal rules and defense and denial of litigation rights according to the presidential decree. In addition, it has been proven, according to the data available with us, that most of the files, around 80% of them, are based on security reports, and not as the law requires that any complaints are filed with the Inspection at the Ministry of Justice.
Soundbite (Murad Allala – Political Analyst):
“The administrative decision was expected for two reasons: First, the decisions of the Tunisian administrative judiciary previously issued regarding collective punishments that targeted judges for many years, as well as teachers and employees of the Ministry of Interior. So, it was to be expected. Secondly, the files according to the available information were not completed and the Administrative Court waited for some time to find itself compelled to issue its decision, which remains a decision subject to appeal.
Soundbite (Fadil Al-Tayashi – Journalist):
“This case of dismissing judges is still open, despite the Administrative Court’s decision to suspend the implementation of the dismissal, especially when we know that the Ministry of Justice decided last week to pay a pension to these judges, which means that the procedures here is somewhat complicated. It is not yet known how this file will be dealt with, and in general the Presidency of the Republic and the Ministry of Justice, and everyone is required to provide more clarifications on this issue, which has become an issue of public opinion in Tunisia.