Archive for November 4th, 2010

A Brave Woman and Supreme Court Justice Speaks Out

November 4, 2010

Few people dare say in Venezuela what they think, least of all if they are civil servants. One exception is Justice of the Supreme Court Blanca Marmol de Leon. Justice Marmol has not only been outspoken when needed, but has also expressed the dissenting voice in many decisions which were clearly biased by the influence (and power) of the Government on Court members.

Thus, kudos to Justice Marmol for her statements today. In any other country what she is saying would create an upheaval, generate investigations and the like. In Venezuela, they are just part of every day life. Another lonely voice making accusations that show what a farce this Government is.

Here are the highlights:

“The independence of Judges is lost, they are not autonmous. They are scared because they can be fired or jailed”

“The Judicial Power is threatened. Judges are afraid and in a country where judges are afradid, citizens can not sleep well”

“The Venezuelan Supreme Court favors the policies of the Government”

In Venezuela, Supreme Court Justices last for twelve years or until retirement age. The Chavez administration wants to retire eight (out of 32) before January, so the current National Assembly selects and elects them. Legal? Yes! But it certainly violates the will and mandate of the people, as Justices need two thirds of the votes to be elected.

A brave woman indeed!

(Disclaimer: While I have never met Justice Marmol, I do know her husband, a fellow physicist)