Presidenti i Republikës së Shqipërisë

shkolla magjistratures

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Statement of the President of the Republic, H.E. Mr. Bajram Begaj on the 25th Anniversary of the School of the Magistrates

It is a special pleasure to be here today to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the establishment of the Albanian School of Magistrates. My congratulations on organizing this event and today’s conference.

The establishment of the School of Magistrates, 25 years ago, is undoubtedly an important event, which enabled a fundamental change in the justice system as a whole, and in particular with respect to the recruitment process, professional and moral training of judges, prosecutors and all other auxiliary actors in the justice system.

Despite the difficulties faced during these 25 years, the School of Magistrates has received quite positive evaluations for its work, confirmed both by local authorities and various international reports, as a first rank academic institution for legal professionals.

On a day like this, appreciating the contributions of many actors and collaborators is not only a natural thing to do, but also a moral obligation. Just as it is necessary to discuss and reflect on difficulties, obstacles, solutions and future challenges.

Two and a half decades ago, the School of Magistrates came about as a judicious necessity to  reform the justice system. The contribution over the years of numerous professors and associates, among the most prominent in the field of jurisprudence in Albania, but also that of the directors, has proven valuable and has undoubtedly offered the appropriate  leverage and influence to shape the good name of the School, in upgrading it to its present level of a constitutional institution – the only one with the mission and destiny to directly influence the establishment of a new justice system, based on impartiality, accountability, transparency and guaranteeing basic human rights and freedoms.

Over the years, the cooperation of the School of Magistrates with our international partners, such as the USA, the Council of Europe, the European Commission, as well as numerous agreements of cooperation with important counterpart institutions in the region and other countries, have enabled the exchange of best experiences, as well as consolidation and recognition of the School as the country’s only institution in providing the highest professional training of judges, prosecutors, state lawyers, etc.

Nevertheless, the School of Magistrates should play a more active role and benefit as much as possible from cooperation with partners, donors, European and American counterpart structures and networks. Publications and scientific research should continue to be supported and be a helpful instrument in improving its work and fulfil  responsibilities.

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With the constitutional changes, the School of Magistrates is facing even greater challenges and responsibilities. The strategic mission of the professional training of judges, prosecutors, state attorneys, chancellors, assistants and legal advisers, either in the introductory or continuing training program, gives the School of Magistrates a very important and critical role, being the threshold of all recruitments in the justice system.

For this very reason, your work has a decisive influence on the quality of the human resources throughout the justice system, on the formation of magistrates with a high professional and moral level, on the increase of public trust in the figure of the justice authorities and the justice system as a whole.

As an independent institution, it is crucial that the process of recruitment and assessment is carried out with objectivity and transparency, that the teaching is qualitative and that the institution further consolidates its independence in the exercise of its constitutional functions.

Independence and impartiality in your work today are the key to the independence and impartiality of judges and prosecutors tomorrow. Your independence today means fair and impartial decisions tomorrow.

Dear participants,

With the opening of accession talks for European Union membership, justice is one of the first chapters to be negotiated. All national institutions are facing new challenges, which require adequate priority management, with due responsibility towards the country and citizens.

The European Integration Agenda should serve as an incentive to fulfil institutional responsibilities and boost public trust in justice institutions.

In cooperation with other new justice institutions and other central institutions, the School of Magistrates has its role to play, as defined within the respective legal framework, which I am convinced will fulfil successfully.

The current mission the School of Magistrates has today, for the preparation, professional and moral formation of legal professionals is, in fact, a mission that carries the historical importance of creating a sustainable justice system and building a society based on the rights and freedoms of the individual and his equality before the law. Since only equality before the law creates a stable, fair and harmonious society.

Just as it has done so far, I am confident that the School of Magistrates will continue to provide excellent opportunities for legal education in the future, in a qualitative and professional manner.

I wish you success in your work and mission,

Thank you!