Public Defender Applies to Constitutional Court regarding State Inspector’s Office
The Public Defender of Georgia has applied to the Constitutional Court of Georgia and requested the declaration of the legislative changes adopted by the Parliament of Georgia on December 30, 2021 unconstitutional. The legislative changes abolish the State Inspector's Office and the position of the Inspector.
The State Inspector’s Service - an independent institution - and the position of the State Inspector were established in 2018. In 2019, the Inspector was elected by the Parliament of Georgia for a term of six years. The competence of the Inspector included the investigation of crimes committed by law enforcement officials, as well as the protection of personal data and supervision of the legality of covert investigative activities. The Parliament of Georgia started consideration of the legislative changes on December 27, 2021 and passed them in three readings in exactly four days, as a result of which, the State Inspector’s Office was abolished and the State Inspector and the Deputies of the State Inspector were dismissed.
The State Inspector shall enjoy special guarantees of independence due to his/her functions. Therefore, in the practice of the Constitutional Court, early termination of the term of office of the service within the framework of the legislative reform can be justified only in the presence of significant public interest, which has not been the case. At the stage of the consideration of the draft law, the Public Defender of Georgia issued a statement and called on the Parliament not to adopt the unconstitutional amendments.
The Public Defender of Georgia considers that the disputed normative acts contradict Article 25 of the Constitution of Georgia, which prohibits unjustified dismissal of public servants, Article 9 of the Constitution, which requires an effective investigation into allegations of ill-treatment, and Article 15, which provides constitutional guarantees for privacy. The Public Defender of Georgia has appealed against all the normative acts that abolish the service, dismiss the State Inspector (Deputies of the State Inspector) and prevent the effective functioning of the Inspector's Service.
The Public Defender of Georgia is petitioning the Constitutional Court of Georgia to suspend the validity of the disputed normative acts until March 1, 2022, in order to make it possible to carry out effective constitutional control.
Due to the importance and special nature of the issue, we call on educational institutions and local and international organizations operating in Georgia to submit amicus curie breifs to the Constitutional Court and to support the demands set out in the claim as much as possible. Resolving this dispute is important for the protection of human rights and the rule of law in Georgia.