The Attorney General's Office has started work on a bill to change the composition of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) through constitutional amendments.
The Attorney General's Office said in a statement that the bill is being drafted in accordance with international norms and principles to ensure that the JSC is a transparent institution free from political influence. The bill will be introduced in the third session of the Parliament this year, the AG Office said.
“This office has also decided to commence necessary meetings with the Supreme Court, High Court, lower courts, JSC, and other relevant bodies within the next week to seek views and consultations for the drafting of the bill,” the statement said.
Reviewing the composition of the JSC and amending the Constitution accordingly is one of the pledges made by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih to reform the judiciary. Although the opposition has repeatedly introduced constitutional amendment bills to change the composition of the JSC, the main-ruling MDP's clear majority in Parliament rejects the bills every time.
The current composition of the JSC:
A judge other than the Chief Justice elected from among the judges of the Supreme Court
A judge elected from among the judges of the High Court
A judge elected from among the judges of the lower courts
A member of the Parliament appointed by the Members of Parliament
A person appointed by the Parliament from among the public
A person appointed by the President
President of the Civil Service Commission
A lawyer elected from among the lawyers licensed to practice law in the Maldives