Provisional Legislative Council

PLC Paper No. 374/96-97

Ref.: PLC/BC/07

Paper for the House Committee
Meeting on 7 June 1997

Legal Adviser (Bills Committee) ' s Report on
Judicial Service Commission
(Amendment) Bill 1997

Object of the Bill

To amend the Judicial Service Commission Ordinance (Cap. 92) ( " the Ordinance " ) so as to provide for transitional matters relating to the first appointment of Judges and judicial officers on the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

Provisional Legislative Council Brief Reference

2.A Brief (Ref.:CE/7/1(C)) issued by the Chief Executive ' s Office for the Provisional Legislative Council on Judicial Service Commission (Amendment) Bill 1997 dated 4 June 1997.

Date of First Reading

3.7 June 1997.


4.The main function of the Judicial Service Commission is to advise the Governor on the filling of vacancies in judicial offices.

5.The Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Ordinance (Cap. 484) provides that the Judicial Officers Recommendation Commission (JORC) will replace the existing Judicial Service Commission on 1 July 1997.

6.The Chief Executive has already appointed a JORC (designate), which in turn has recommended the Chief Justice (designate) of the Court of Final Appeal. The Chief Justice (designate) is to swear-in on 1 July 1997.

7.Nonetheless, the Ordinance provides that members of the JORC should have taken their oaths before making recommendations on the appointment of judges.

8.It is now proposed to add a new section 7A as a transitional provision stating that the recommendations made by JORC shall not be invalidated merely by reason of the fact that members of the Commission had not taken the relevant oaths.

9.Other amendments are to give effect to adaptation of laws such as substituting the expression " the Governor " by " the Chief Executive " .

Public consultation

10.According to the Brief, the Chief Executive ' s Office anticipates that the public will accept the proposals as necessary technical adjustments.

Consultation with the Provisional Legislative Council

11.No consultation has been arranged so far.


12.The amendments are mostly technical in nature. It is recommended that the Bill be supported.

Prepared by

HO Ying-chu, Anita
Legal Adviser (Bills Committee)
Provisional Legislative Council Secretariat
6 June 1997