Recommendations of the Fifth Legal Monitor

Recommendations of the Fifth Legal Monitor


Justice is the basis of ruling and a characteristic of the State of good governance and the rule of law. It is a tool for safeguarding the security of citizens and the unity of society. It represents another side of the security of the country and of the Palestinian state’s progress and occupancy of its active and model membership in the international community. The embodiment of the state of law and justice is a dream and an end that are not unique to MUSAWA but are an expression of the conscience of the people who yearn for a free country and a happy nation.


These were the envisaged objectives of issuing the first survey report on the perceptions of several segments of relevance, competence, and concern in the Palestinian society in 2007 when MUSAWA issued its first report. As a result of the widespread interest among the community of jurists and those concerned in justice at the national, regional and international levels, MUSAWA took upon itself the task of issuing periodic reports primarily concerned with indicating the changes in the situation of justice. Therefore, MUSAWA has issued four previous reports of the Legal Monitor; one report every two years.


Proceeding from the importance of issuing a comprehensive national report based on the most up-to-date practical methodologies and best practices at the international level, and in partnership and exchange of professional expertise between local and international institutions used to issuing survey reports related to the situation of justice; MUSAWA, in partnership with SAWASYA program – Strengthening the Rule of Law in the State of Palestine, issues the fifth Legal Monitor Report as a comprehensive national report, which reflects the views of nine target groups. The survey report was implemented by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS), chosen for its high professionalism in the field, thus providing MUSAWA, as well as all of the people concerned and the Palestinian legal persons the broadest database related to the performance of the justice system. MUSAWA is pleased to put the report out there for the use of all people as of today.


As an independent, non-governmental, professional and neutral watchdog organization, MUSAWA – The Palestinian Center for the Independence of the Judiciary and the Legal Profession; and after thoroughly examining the results and the views of the participants in the opinion poll on the situation of the Palestinian justice system; and referring to the main points agreed upon by the majority of the participants in the survey from all segments, particularly their reference to the interference of the security forces in the judiciary, as well as the adoption of mechanisms based on favoritism and nepotism in appointments and promotions in the judiciary and the Public Prosecution, and that there is corruption in the performance of the justice institutions, and that the situation of justice is not moving towards improvement and excellence, and the absence of the political will, and the lack of the independence of the justice institutions; MUSAWA summarizes the aforementioned, in addition to the comments submitted by the participants at the press conference announcing the results of the poll, in the following recommendations, which shall be directed to the duty bearers:


  1. There is a need for an explicit and practical political will towards unifying the justice system in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, as one unified, impartial, active, and independent judicial authority.
  2. Commencing to take all necessary measures guaranteeing the unification and reform of the justice system, with independent community participation.
  1. Applying the performance evaluation policy to everyone working in the justice system, as an effective tool to combat corruption and ensure the development of performance.
  2. Promoting the rule of law culture and respecting it as a credible alternative to conflicts resolutions apart of anarchy and chaos.
  3. Enforcing the principle of separation of powers to counteract the phenomenon of interference in the work of the justice systems’ institutions, and to account its perpetrators.
  4. Adopting incorrupt alternative conditions and mechanisms of the hiring and promotion of the justice system’s employees.
  5. Waiving the immunity of the ones accused of corruption, and to refer them to fair trials as it is vital for the success of the anti-corruption policy applied in the justice system institution.
  6. Empowering the institutional hierarchy and the professional code of conduct, and respecting the competencies and powers inside the justice system’s institutions, their relationships, and their relationship with the executive authority in a way that maintains the professional independence of these institutions and their employees, and ensure that they are only subjected to the law and conscience.
  7. On the academic level, identifying the weakness in scientific research’ phenomenon in the law colleges in Palestinian universities, which play a weak role in monitoring and developing legislation.


MUSAWA also recommend to the right holders for:


  1. The civil society institutions should identify the justice system’s reality as revealed in the fifth monitor report, and set out their priorities and visions of the actions that need to be taken against the barriers of justice in Palestine, and avoid solutions that could deepen the crises instead of resolving it.    
  2. To pool the visions and efforts of the civil society institutions regarding the mechanism of unifying, reforming and developing the judicial system.
  3. To activate the CSO’s role in the embodiment of the rule of law, and enabling the citizens, especially the marginalized groups, to obtain their legal and constitutional rights, and introducing them to the legal means to protect their rights.  
  4. We recommend the Palestinian Bar Association, the Ministry of High Education; the Universities’ managements take the practical actions needed to assess the levels of law students and graduates, who seek becoming lawyers after graduation.   
  5. We recommend the Bar Association’s council activate the role of disciplinary councils and promote their professionalism in addressing any manifestation or practice that contradicts with the professional code of conduct, negatively affects the citizens’ trust in the association and blocks its mission of ensuring the access to justice. Disciplinary councils can address the mentioned problems by combating corruption, bribes, and patronage, while paying close attention to build the capacities of training lawyers, including reconsidering the training system and the relationship between training lawyers and practicing lawyers, the bodies of the official legal system and the agents.  
  6. All competent bodies should promote reading and comparative research among those who work in the legal profession and conduct motivational events and activities.   


We reiterate that these recommendations represent the most significant demands of the citizens who participated in the survey on the justice institutions, thus, we look forward with anticipation to the results of the next monitor report, hoping that they reflect a positive major and fundamental change in the views of citizens.




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