Slow and steady bid to get top post right
DEPUTY Premier Jackie Trad says she understands community concern about how long the Government has taken to find a permanent replacement for former chief justice Tim Carmody.
But Ms Trad has also moved to reassure Queensland that Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath is intent on ensuring the state gets the appointment “right”.
The Courier-Mail yesterday revealed the legal fraternity was concerned about the fact a new chief justice was yet to be appointed.
“As you’re aware, we have an Acting Chief Justice currently and that arrangement is fine,” Ms Trad said.
“I understand the community’s concern about finalising the appointment process, but I think it’s very important that we get the appointment right because we saw what happened last term when we got the appointment wrong.”
The Deputy Premier said Ms D’Ath was “having those conversations that she needs to have in order to get that appointment right”.
While there was initial support for the consultative process within legal circles, the extended length of time taken to make the decision has raised eyebrows.
It is understood the State Government has already finished its consultation with the Supreme Court judges, as well as prominent legal bodies such as the Queensland Law Society and Bar Association of Queensland.
Court of Appeal judge Catherine Holmes is shaping as the favourite to take the job, owing to her long experience on the bench and strong capabilities.
The state’s current top judge Justice Margaret McMurdo, who is president of the Court of Appeal, is also one of the leading contenders for the post but is considered too controversial owing to perceived links to the Carmody unrest.
Newman government appointee Justice David Jackson is also strongly regarded within the judiciary and is in consideration.