For 25 years, the Senate has been preserving and developing the values laid down in the foundations of the cassation instance
5 October, 2020
Recipients of Silver Scales in the 1st row (from the left): Normunds Salenieks, Marite Zagere, Edite Vernusa, Gvido Zemribo, Ivars Bickovics, Veronika Krumina, Pavels Gruzins, Anita Polakova; in the 2nd row: Andris Gulans, Aigars Strupiss, Peteris Dzalbe
Discussion moderator Senator Veronika Krumina and Chief Justices of the Supreme Court Gvido Zemribo, Aigars Strupiss, Andris Gulans and Ivars Bickovics
Since the restoration of Latvia's independence, the judicial system, including the Senate, has not lacked a challenge, and it has been a good opportunity to keep the Senate in a healthy tonus, as was said by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Aigars Strupiss at the 25th anniversary celebration of the restored Senate.
The structure of the Senate, number and composition of Senators have changed. The Senate has gone through several reforms. It had lost and regained its historical name. The legal system and understanding of the principles of justice have changed, and supranational and international laws are playing an increasingly important role. Cases are getting more complicated, new categories of cases are emerging, the participants in the proceedings are becoming more educated and skilful. Society is changing.
"Despite these challenges, the Senate has maintained the spirit of the cassation instance that was laid in its foundations more than 100 years ago and restored 25 years ago. And I am sure that this will be maintained in the future as well,” the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court emphasized.
Each time period has its own challenges, and the former Chief Justices of the Supreme Court Gvido Zemribo, Andris Gulans and Ivars Bickovics spoke about them during the festive discussion. Senator Veronika Krumiņa, a discussion moderator, outlined the most important events during the time of office of each Chief Justice and invited them to assess how these events affected the values of the Senate, what was the role of senators as personalities in these events. In turn, the current Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Aigars Strupiss was invited to describe the values of the 21st century senator's personality.
"A senator of the 21st century is and will remain a human being. Professionalism and humanity, respect for human beings – these are constant values. However, society is changing and society's demands from the court are changing too – today senators can no longer hide behind the formal authority of judge’s robe, the court must be visible and understandable to the public,” the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court summed up.
In honour of the 25th anniversary of the restored Senate, a special award of the Supreme Court has been created – Silver Scales. They were presented at the ceremony to significant people in the history of the Senate – former and current Chief Justices of the Supreme Court and Chairs of Senate’s Departments, as well as to Senator Marite Zagere, who is the only first member of the first composition of the Senate who still continues working in the Department of Civil Cases. A lot of gratitude was expressed to all the Senators, both former and current, for their work.
The Senate was greeted on its anniversary by the Constitutional Court, chairs of regional courts, the Minister of Justice, the Prosecutor General and the Chair of the Council of Sworn Advocates.
Information prepared by
Rasma Zvejniece, the Head of the Division of Communication of the Supreme Court
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