23 November 2008

Macau signs judiciary protocol with East Timor

Maucau Daily Times 22 November 2008 by Anni Lam and Sara Farr - Macau and East Timor signed a judiciary agreement yesterday which will see both regions benefit from reciprocal training of its legal professionals. Florinda da Rosa Silva Chan, Secretary for Administration and Justice and the Minister of Justice in East Timor, Lucia Lobato, signed the framework of Legal and Judiciary reciprocal protocol agreement at the government headquarters yesterday evening.

With singing the protocol, the first of its kind between Macau and its counterparts, the SAR and the Democratic Republic of East Timor will further co-operate in legal aspect as well as help each other in capturing fugitives on the run, organise transfer of sentenced convicts and help with criminal investigations.

The protocol singing was also authorised by the central government, Chan said. “Some of the activities such as judiciary staff training or lawyers' training will be implemented as soon as possibile, and the SAR government will cordially provide supports if there any need for it,” Chan said, adding that other assistance such as registrars' and other related officials' training could also be provided under by signing a further co-operation agreement.

The Minster of Justice of Democratic Republic of East Timor said that as a new country of only six years, the nation will need to rely on Macau to train legal professionals. “Macau is a good experience for us to learn from,” the Minister said, adding that East Timor is also looking to train private lawyers with the expertise from Macau. She said that the number of judiciary staff and vocational training is sill scarce in East Timor.

“There is a lack of legal board members, and that is such a big concern for us [East Timor],” Lobato said, adding that the country lacks the most in judges, lawyers and registrars. Chan added that this agreement is important to Macau because since the SAR is also short on the number of legal experts, “it is an opportunity to explore other ideas and other ways [of recruiting more legal professionals.” The content of the framework includes vocational training, notary work as well as exemption on notarial documents.


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