"The right of individuals to a fair trial can only be sufficiently ensured if the court is independent. In democratic countries, such establishments as the Council for the Judiciary are one of the guarantees for strengthening the independence of the court," Ivars Bickovics, the Chair of the Council for the Judiciary, points out in the video interview to the newspaper "Latvijas Vestnesis".

The Chair of the Council for the Judiciary explains the purpose of establishing the Council and its role in ensuring the balance of power, the expansion of the functions of the Council and the strengthening of the authority of the judicial system.

The Chair of the Council for the Judiciary explains that at the time when developing the idea of ​​the Council for the Judiciary, it was planned to transfer the definition of the policy and strategy of the judicial system and the improvement of the organization of the work of the judicial system within Council’s competence. However, by establishing the Council for the Judiciary in 2010, its competence is narrowed down by law only to "participation in". Thus, until now the Council for the Judiciary has, to a large extent, been a consultative body. In recent years, the decision-making capacity or the amount of competences for the Council has been increased. Amendments to the Law "On Judicial Power", which the State President has handed over to the Saeima for a second review, provides for new substantial amendments specifically regarding the increase of the competence of the Council for the Judiciary.

When answering the question whether individuals can address the Council for the Judiciary with complaints, the Chair of the Council points out that the Council of the Judiciary is not indifferent to the way in which the courts of Latvia operate, although it does not have jurisdiction to handle complaints or petitions submitted by individuals, for example, regarding the actions of a judge or a work of a court. For this purpose, judicial self-governing bodies have been established.

Facing the disrespectful actions of a judge, a person can address the Judicial Ethics Commission; issues related to doubts regarding the qualification of a judge are considered by the Judicial Qualification Committee; the disciplinary proceedings against judges are being examined by the Judicial Disciplinary Committee – explains the Chair of the Council for the Judiciary.

"The judicial system is ready and has so far tried to honor its duty to ensure a fair trial and to turn against those colleagues who have raised doubts or suspicions about their competence or have caused the reputation of the judicial system to be questioned," the Chair of the Council for the Judiciary stresses at the end of the interview.

See the interview here: http://www.lvportals.lv/visi/skaidrojumi?id=292526