After 13 Years of Debates Brazil Approves Judiciary Reform

Last night, in a second vote, the Senate approved a Judiciary Reform bill which will now become law, although a part of the bill that was modified by the Senate will have to return to the Chamber of Deputies.

Judiciary reform bills have been floating around in Congress for 13 years, so the favorable vote last night, 56 to 2, with 2 abstentions, was commemorated by the Minister of Justice, Thomaz Bastos.


Bastos called the new law “a landmark leap in quality in the history of Brazil. This bill is a point of departure and opens the way to other Judiciary reforms.”


Pursuant to the bill, within 180 days a National Justice Council will be set up with members from the Judiciary branch, government prosecutors (Ministério Público) and the Bar Association, besides two lay members appointed by Congress.


The council will receive charges against members of the Judiciary branch and government lawyers. It will also oversee the Judiciary system and its operation.


The bill also establishes a Government Prosecutor Council with the same attributions regarding government lawyers and their activities.


“With these external control mechanisms in place, it will be possible to monitor Judiciary branch decisions, especially in the administrative area, with the transparency the public wants.


“The establishment of the council will also make it possible to link previously separate units of the Judiciary into an integrated whole,” explained senator José Jorge (PFL-PE), who wrote the final text of the bill.


In the final text, the senators decided to keep a modified principle of precedent (known as “súmula vinculante,” in Portuguese) which requires lower court judges to follow decisions made by at least eight of the eleven justices on the Brazilian Supreme Court. “This will speed up judicial processes,” declared senator Aloizio Mercadante (PT-SP).


The bill also institutes a “quarantine,” prohibiting Judiciary officials and government lawyers from returning to work in the same area for a period of time after they retire.


Another change is to make certain crimes against humanity federal crimes.


The items in the bill which have to go back to the Chamber of Deputies concern nepotism and certain restricted cases of the “súmula vinculante.”


Agência Brasil
Translator: Allen Bennett

Tags:

  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Ads

You May Also Like

Paulo Coelho’s Readers Get a Treat: 25% of His Next Book Online, for Free

International bestselling author, Brazilian Paulo Coelho, has a new book ready to be released. ...

Brazil’s Central Bank to Keep Interest Rates High

In the judgment of the economist Ricardo Denadai, of LCA Consultants, despite the financial ...

One Billion Liters: Brazil Becoming a Global Milk Power

Brazil is going to have record-high exports of dairy products in 2008. According to ...

Daguerreotype and the Birth of Photography in Brazil

Louis-Jacques Mandé Daguerre (1787-1851) was a French artist from whose name was coined the ...

Brazil’s Christian Church Loses First 5 of About 100 Lawsuits Against Press

Brazil's largest daily newspaper, Folha de S. Paulo, won two more court victories this ...

Brazil’s Agriculture Minister Frustrated with Government’s Inaction

Obtaining funds to alleviate Brazil’s farming sector of its growing indebtness has turned into ...

Por aí

Continental Sambajazz Hendrik Meurkens and Charlie Byrd, both supreme jazz musicians, both touched by ...

Brazil Doing Bad, Lula Doing Good

At the beginning of the Lula term of office, the time people were willing ...

Brazilian Faucet Maker Wants to Expand Its Overseas Reach

Company Docol, from the southern Brazilian state of Santa Catarina, one of the main ...

Brazil Wants Higher Tariff to Bar Foreign Rice from Mercosur

Rice planters from the Mercosur will be meeting to decide a Brazilian proposal to ...