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Chief Justice Meaza Ashenafi and Solomon Areda, vice president of the Supreme Court, share a smile during a seminar held at the Intercontinental Hotel.


Chief Justice Meaza Ashenafi and Solomon Areda, vice president of the Supreme Court, share a smile during a seminar held at the Intercontinental Hotel on February 14, 2020. A monthly seminar organised by the Supreme Court, this time it was themed, "Constitutionalism and the Role of Courts in Democracy,” with Alemayehu G. Mariam, a political science professor at California State University and board chair of the Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund, appearing as a guest speaker.


Chief Justice Meaza opened the seminar by highlighting efforts in strengthening the judiciary as well as administrative processes. To the latter end, she pointed out the 90,000 files that were closed at the federal courts in the first half of the current fiscal year.




Under the Law & Justice Advisory Council, which is composed of 15 law professionals, the Chief Justice has also overseen the drafting of legal frameworks and the amendment of administrative and service procedures with the aim of reforming the justice system. Despite the reform efforts and the initial enthusiasm following the nomination of Meaza as Chief Justice, the judiciary still faces questions of partiality to and independence from the executive.


Alemayehu, an outspoken critic of the administrations preceding that of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD), especially that of the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, took the stage after Meaza to discuss courts’ role in democracy building, mostly using the experience of the United States. “America’s judicial system is a good example for any country to follow,” he stressed, pointing out the hierarchical relationship between the lower and higher courts in the United States before he left the stage for an open discussion.



PUBLISHED ON Feb 15,2020 [ VOL 20 , NO 1033]



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