Lithuanian ministry names Valancius as best candidate for EU judge

  • 2021-05-10
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – The Lithuanian Justice Ministry on Monday named Virginijus Valancius as the best candidate for a General Court judge, the post he is currently holding. 

Two years ago, President Gitanas Nauseda did not approve of Valancius' re-appointment. 

Valancius scored the highest among all eight applicants interviewed by a selection panel headed by Justice Minister Evelina Dobrovolska, the ministry said.

Valancius' nomination has yet to be approved by the government, the president and the parliament.  

If Lithuania nominates Valancius, he will have to be endorsed by a special Luxembourg-based panel.   

Lithuania is currently represented in the General Court by Rimvydas Norkus, a former Supreme Court judge appointed to the EU court last year, and Valancius. The latter's term of office ended in October 2019, but he is staying on until a new candidate has been approved.

In July 2019, the government proposed Valancius for a second term in the General Court, but Nauseda did not approve his nomination.

Another two candidates have been rejected, too. Gediminas Mesonis, a former judge of the Lithuanian Constitutional Court, was approved by the Seimas for the job in January 2019, but was rejected by the Luxembourg panel.

Last October, Evaldas Pasilis, the then prosecutor general, was nominated for the position, but failed to receive the green light from Nauseda. 

The General Court deals with cases lodged by individuals, businesses or organizations against acts by EU institutions and bodies, cases filed by EU countries against certain decisions of the European Commission or the Council, and other cases.

If approved, Lithuania's candidate would likely take office in the second half of this year.