The Lebanese National Bloc party stated that “the independence of the judiciary is the foundation of all political, administrative, economic, and social reforms”, noting that Minister of Justice Marie Claude Najm should be honest with citizens in naming those who are disrupting the system. The Bloc asserted that devoting judicial appointments to religions goes against the constitution and consecrates a sectarian state instead of a state of law. The Bloc said that the judiciary is the best body in power to implement competence and citizenship, and not sectarianism, as the sole criterion for its formation.
In its statement, the Bloc commented on the letter that the Minister of Justice addressed to the “Supreme Judicial Council”, especially in light of the demand for complete transparency after 30 years of ambiguity practiced by unconstitutional and corrupt governments. The Bloc saw that the Minister Najm’s objection to “devoting judicial positions to sects” to be correct as it is in contradiction to article 95 of the constitution. The Bloc added that the “Supreme Judicial Council” should clarify whether any of its members are under any political or factional pressure. Devoting judicial positions to sects is not only unconstitutional but also consecrates a sectarian state instead of a state of law.
The Bloc agreed with the minister’s objections to the lack of observation of the “objective criteria” that the council itself set up, and that applies to all appointments, especially for public prosecution and investigation judges; these tow judicial bodies are the most important stations in the fight against corruption. Every case begins with those two bodies who can either bury the case, as was done for the past 30 years for cases about government infringements, or they can carry it through until the truth is discovered and the guilty parties punished if guilt is established.
The Bloc wondered about the content of the “Supreme Judicial Council’s” reply to this objection, asking if it was true that the parties in power are exerting pressure to keep some names and to eliminate others in an attempt to settle accounts between the political parties that formed the government. Is there pressure to keep the status quo and to keep burying cases?
Pertaining to Minister Najm’s statement that it was possible to keep a sectarian balance in the appointments, the Bloc from its position of keeping with the vision of the October 17 uprising sees that the main crisis is sectarian politics with its authoritarian practices of quotas and corruption. It is a fact that sectarianism is not a new issue, it has roots that extend to over 100 years back; its elimination cannot be done with a stroke of a pen, but through a balanced path between rhetoric and actions.
In action, the abolition of sectarianism and its deadly political consequences manifested itself in the demonstrations of 17 October, giving a strong indication of the will of the people on which policy can be built. As for the texts, the judiciary authority, away from politics and other administrative positions, is the best body to implement competence and citizenship as the only criterion for appointments, and not sectarianism. Justice has no religion and there is no greater power than the power of truth.
If the rule of sectarian balance were broken by the judiciary it would have been in line with the October 17 movement that broke this rule in the streets and demonstrations, paving the way to eliminating sectarian politics. The Bloc concluded its statement by stressing that the an independent judiciary is the foundation of all political, administrative, economic, and social reforms, and that the minister of justice should be honest with the Lebanese people and divulge the names of those who are disrupting the system.