WHAT IS THE ALUMNI CLUB OF THE JUDICIAL ACADEMY
The Alumni Club of the Judicial Academy is a nonprofit, professional association of judicial officials (Judges and Deputy Public Prosecutors), as well as attendants of the initial training for judges and prosecutors, who have completed or are attending the Judicial Academy.
Basic goals that the Alumni Club promotes are the rule of law, increasing availability of justice, building public confidence in the judiciary and promoting efficiency of the judiciary through the reform of legal framework. We especially advocate for the establishment of clear, measurable and objective criteria for selection and promotion of judicial officials, as well as continuous training, both of the judicial officials, and judicial staff.
About 70% of citizens have no confidence in courts or prosecutor’s offices and 90% of citizens consider that proceedings in Serbia last too long. This clearly indicates the existence of extreme discontent in this branch of government and that reform must be thoroughgoing. The Alumni Club advocates for a more efficient management of judicial system by applying a different monitoring system of court workload, alternative dispute resolution, amending the Law on Court Fees, the Court Rules of Procedure, procedural laws, etc., in a word – a more agile judiciary suited for citizens.
For thoroughgoing changes to occur a new, trained and independent staff is needed, so the first step in regaining lost confidence of citizens is selection of judicial officials on clear, measurable and objective criteria. Such criteria don’t exist now, and citizens don’t know how judges and prosecutors are selected. Only clear, measurable and objective criteria can guarantee judicial and prosecutorial independence and the integrity of the judiciary, because the judiciary is not a technical mechanism but a human institution made of people. We don’t want these people to feel like they owe someone a favor for their selection, as is the case today. Only such people, such judges and such prosecutors can lead a thoroughgoing reform.
94% of newly appointed judges and 85% of deputy prosecutors in the last two years have been appointed even though they haven’t finished the official governmental training course for judges and prosecutors at the Judicial Academy of the Republic of Serbia, while only 6% of graduated students of the Judicial Academy are selected as a judge, and respectively only 15% as a deputy prosecutor. The Alumni Club considers that training of judicial officials before they are appointed must become mandatory as soon as possible, as in line with the guidelines of the National Judicial Reform Strategy for the period of 2013 – 2018, for our judicial system to become more efficient and for the system of human rights protection as stated in the European Convention on Human Rights to be satisfactory.