Move assault on human rights, says OHCHRUN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein has condemned the move to impeach Chief Justice Sushila Karki, warning that such actions suggest a “concerted attempt by government to undermine the independence of the judiciary”.
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein has condemned the move to impeach Chief Justice Sushila Karki, warning that such actions suggest a “concerted attempt by government to undermine the independence of the judiciary”.
Issuing a statement on Friday, Zeid urged the Nepal government to respect the independence of the judiciary and withdraw the impeachment motion. “I urge the Nepal authorities to respect the independence of the judiciary, to withdraw what appears to be a politically motivated impeachment motion and to commit to the processes of transitional justice and accountability that are so important if Nepal is to overcome the tragic legacy of its conflict,” Zeid said.
“Chief Justice Sushila Karki has been instrumental in a number of high-profile and politically sensitive decisions, and therefore the attempt to remove her gives rise to serious concerns about the government’s commitment to transitional justice and the rule of law,” said Zeid in a statement.
This suggests a fundamental misunderstanding regarding the role of an independent judiciary, the High Commissioner noted.
“Recent rulings by the Supreme Court have been critical in advancing human rights in Nepal, assisting victims seeking justice for the crimes and serious human rights violations committed against them,” Zeid said.
Two ruling parties—Nepali Congress and CPN (Maoist Centre)—had filed an impeachment motion against CJ Karki on April 30, alleging that she had interfered with the prerogatives of the executive.
The motion was presented before the Legislature-Parliament on Friday. However, no deliberation could be held on it due to obstruction from the opposition parties including the CPN-UML, Rastriya Prajatantra Party, and Nepal Loktantrik Forum.