On March 10, the High Council of Justice (HCoJ) of Georgia, the body overseeing the judiciary, has nominated Supreme Court justice Nino Kadagidze as a candidate for the post of Supreme Court chairperson.
Kadagidze will require support of at least 76 MPs to be endorsed on the post. If endorsed by the parliament, Kadagidze will take the post for a ten-year tenure.
Nino Kadagidze is among the 14 Supreme Court judges who were confirmed by parliament last December for a lifetime tenure.
Former judge of Tbilisi Court of Appeals, Nino Kadagidze held various positions at the Ministry of Justice of Georgia earlier In 1994-2000. In 2000 she was appointed as a judge of the Chamber of Administrative Cases of Tbilisi District Court. In 2002-2012 she was a judge of the Supreme Court of Georgia. Since June 17, 2013, Kadagidze served as a Judge of the Chamber of Administrative Cases of Tbilisi Court of Appeals.
12 out of HCoJ’s sitting 15 members supported Kadagidze’s candidacy. HCoJ had to pick between Kadagidze and shortlisted Shalva Tadumadze, former Prosecutor General who was also confirmed as the top court justice by parliament in December.
Anna Dolidze, the non-judge member of the HCoJ left the meeting as a sign of protest. She slammed the nomination of Kadagidze’s candidacy as “a farce.”
Dolidze told Civil Georgia that picking Kadagidze as the Supreme Court chair candidate, not ruling party affiliated Tadumadze, is the result of international pressure over Georgian authorities. Dolidze claims, however, that if endorsed by the parliament, Kadagidze will be in charge of the Supreme Court only “pro forma” and that Shalva Tadumadze will still be the one to pull the strings.
Nazibrola Janezashvili, another non judge member of the HCoJ, also did not participate in the Council meeting and deliberately spoiled her vote.
The post of the Supreme Court chair has been vacant since Nino Gvenetadze resigned in August 2018, citing health-related problems.