'No reason given for judge's resignation' - RTHK
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'No reason given for judge's resignation'

2020-09-19 HKT 21:46
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  • The government said Justice James Spigelman had not explained why he resigned from the Court of Final Appeal. File photo: RTHK
    The government said Justice James Spigelman had not explained why he resigned from the Court of Final Appeal. File photo: RTHK
The Chief Executive’s office has downplayed a report that said that Australian judge Justice James Spigelman resigned from the top court over the national security law, saying the judge "did not give any reason for his resignation".

Earlier, Australian broadcaster ABC reported that Spigelman told them he resigned for reasons "related to the content of the national security legislation" but did not elaborate further.

But in a statement issued on Saturday evening, a spokesman from the CE's office said the non-permanent judge of the Court of Final Appeal (CFA) “did not give any reasons for his resignation”.

The statement went on to say “there could be no question” of the new security law affecting the city’s judicial independence and the operation of the judicial system, including the top court.

“Nobody should doubt the HKSAR Government's commitment to the rule of law and judicial independence," the spokesman said, adding the practice of appointing judges from other common law jurisdiction to the CPA has served the city well and will continue.

Spigelman resigned on 2 September, a day after the Chief Executive, Carrie Lam, said there was no separation of powers between the executive, the legislature and the judiciary – backing comments made earlier by her Education Secretary Kevin Yeung.