Bulgarian MPs Elect Swiftly Supreme Judicial Council MembersDomestic | September 26, 2012, Wednesday // 12:11| views
With the Wednesday election in the Parliament, Bulgaria now has a new, 22-member-strong, Supreme Judicial Council. File photo
The Bulgarian Parliament elected swiftly and without any debates the eleven members of the new Supreme Judicial Council, VSS, from the political quota.
As expected, 5 of the 11 are from the ruling Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party, GERB, 2 are from the main opposition, left-wing Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, 2 – from the opposition ethnic Turkish party Movement for Rights and Freedoms, RZS, and 1 each from the far-right, nationalist Ataka, and the conservative Order, Law and Justice party, RZS.
Those from GERB are Yuliana Koleva, Sonya Naydenova, Svetla Petkova, Maria Kuzmanova, and Carolina Muhaylova. The BSP VSS new members are Galina Karagyozova and Nezabravka Stoeva; Vasil Petrov and Daniela Prodanova were nominated by DPS; Yasen Todorov – by Ataka, and Dimitar Uzunov – by RZS.
On September 16, six members of VSS, from the judiciary quota, were elected after twenty four hours of voting – Kamen Ivanov, Yuliya Kovacheva, Milka Yotova, Daniela Kostova, Galya Georgieva, and Kalin Kalpakchiev, while the investigators designated their VSS member, Rumen Georgiev, on September 19.
On September 21, Deputy Chief Prosecutors, Kamen Sitnilski and Mihail Kozharev, Plovdiv Appellate Prosecutor, Rumen Boev, and Blagoevgrad Regional Prosecutor, Elka Atanasova, became VSS members from the prosecutors' quota.
11 VSS members come from the parliamentary quota while the other 11 are from the professional one – 6 judges, 4 prosecutors and 1 investigator.
The current VSS' mandate ends on October 3.
The new VSS will be key for Bulgaria since it will elect the new chief prosecutor, and the president of the Supreme Court of Cassations.
The crucial election of the new VSS comes in the aftermath of several large-scale scandals in which the current one was entangled and the latest EC report on Bulgaria's five-year progress under the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM), highlighting the misguided policies of VSS, the inconsistent application of the principle of independence of the judiciary and the implementation of reforms under external pressure.
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