Nauru appoints new CJ, justices and magistrate
This week marks an important
milestone in Nauru's legal history with the appointment of a new
chief justice, two justices and a resident magistrate.
His Excellency President Baron Waqa
appointed Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi as the new Chief Justice of the
Supreme Court of Nauru, and Justices Elizabeth Hamilton- White and
Mohammed Shafiullah Khan at a swearing-in ceremony yesterday
afternoon (Monday 8 Sept).
Ms Emma Garo was sworn in before
Justice Minister Hon David Adeang as the new resident magistrate
today (9 Sept).
The appointments are especially
significant particularly the appointment of Nauru's first female
Supreme Court judge and the first female magistrate.
Chief Justice Madraiwiwi's legal
career spans more than three decades and has served as vice
president of Fiji, justice of the High Court of Fiji, permanent
arbitrator of Fiji and worked in the Chambers of the Attorney
General's office. His Honour was also appointed a life Peer, a Law
Lord of the Privy Council of Tonga, and also served on the Solomon
Islands Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
In his welcome address President
Waqa highlighted that while the work load ahead will be hectic, His
Excellency is confident the calibre, wisdom and experiences that
the CJ and justices will bring to the Nauru judiciary will be
In his response speech CJ
Madraiwiwi said the swearing in of three members of the Supreme
Court of Nauru "strengthens the capacity of the judiciary and
represents a determination to move beyond the turbulent challenges
of the recent past."
Given the absence of a Supreme
Court judge in Nauru for the last several months, CJ Madraiwiwi
said the first order of business would be to prioritise cases such
as criminal cases because of their implications for personal
"As soon as we have ascertained a
complete profile of matters, we will attempt to assign dates for
hearing as soon as practicable for all concerned," the CJ said.
The second order of business on the
CJ's list is the pressing and urgent need for another two court
houses and judicial chambers.