CLA News / Declaration on preserving and strengthening the independence of the Judiciary and on ensuring the independence of the legal profession
At the 23rd Commonwealth Law Conference (CLC) in The Grand Hyatt Conference Centre, Goa, India, on 5th March 2023, 42 Bar leaders from around the Commonwealth expressed their unanimous approval for the Commonwealth Bar Leaders’ Goa CLC 2023 Declaration.
This declaration reemphasises the importance to the rule of law of a functioning independent Judiciary, properly funded and comprised of appropriately appointed judges. In addition, an independent legal profession is critical to democracy, enabling government and public entities to be held to account.
This meeting of Commonwealth Bar Leaders was an inaugural event for the CLA. After sharing experiences, including the experience of lawyers being pressurised and intimidated for representing unpopular clients and judges being controlled by meagre salaries and time limited appointments, the assembled Bar Leaders resolved unanimously to approve and adopt the “CLC 2023 Goa Declaration on preserving and strengthening the independence of the Judiciary and on securing the independence of the legal profession”.
Conference Chair and CLA immediate Past President, Brian Speers said “this is an important Declaration agreed between the leaders of the legal profession in over 40 countries who are members of the Commonwealth. It re affirms the importance to democracy and the protection of the rights of an individual, of independent legal representation and of being heard before an independent court”.
Commonwealth Lawyers Association
5th March 2023
Read the declaration here