Umar Seno Aji

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Umar Seno Aji
5th Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Indonesia
In office
President Suharto
Preceded by Subekti
Succeeded by Mujono
14th Minister of Law and Human Rights of Indonesia
In office
25 July 1966 28 March 1973
Preceded by Wirjono Prodjodikoro
Succeeded by Mochtar Kusumaatmadja
Personal details
Born5 December 1915
Surakarta, Central Java, Dutch East Indies
Died9 November 1991
Jakarta, DKI Jakarta, Indonesia

Umar Seno Aji (19151984) was the fifth Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Indonesia as well as the fourteenth Indonesian Minister of Law and Human Rights. [1]

The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Indonesia is the head of the Supreme Court of Indonesia.

Supreme Court of Indonesia

The Supreme Court of the Republic of Indonesia is the independent judicial arm of the state. It maintains a system of courts and sits above the other courts and is the final court of appeal. It can also re-examine cases if new evidence emerges.

Ministry of Law and Human Rights (Indonesia)

The Ministry of Law and Human Rights is an Indonesian ministry that administers laws and human rights. It is responsible to the president, and is led by the Minister of Law and Human Rights, Yasonna Laoly, since 27 October 2014. The first minister was Soepomo.

Aji's appointment as minister of law in 1966 was initially viewed as a victory by supporters of the rule of law; [2] this later led to disappointment when, after his appointment, he became an opponent of judicial review. [3] While his predecessor as chief justice Subekti had been a champion of judicial independence, Aji aided in the subordination of the supreme court to the executive branch and his successor as minister of law, Mochtar Kusumaatmadja. [4] [5] His exertion of pressure on courts to avoid giving citizens too many rights in tort cases were one factor that led to the establishment of formal administrative courts in the country, [6] though his politics of patronage are still credited with whittling away the judiciary's independence by the 1970s. [7] [8]

Rule of law Political situation where every citizen is subject to the law

The rule of law is defined in the Oxford English Dictionary as: "The authority and influence of law in society, especially when viewed as a constraint on individual and institutional behavior; (hence) the principle whereby all members of a society are considered equally subject to publicly disclosed legal codes and processes." The phrase "the rule of law" refers to a political situation, not to any specific legal rule.

Judicial review is a process under which executive or legislative actions are subject to review by the judiciary. A court with authority for judicial review may invalidate laws, acts and governmental actions that are incompatible with a higher authority: an executive decision may be invalidated for being unlawful or a statute may be invalidated for violating the terms of a constitution. Judicial review is one of the checks and balances in the separation of powers: the power of the judiciary to supervise the legislative and executive branches when the latter exceed their authority. The doctrine varies between jurisdictions, so the procedure and scope of judicial review may differ between and within countries.

Subekti (1914-1992) was the fourth Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Indonesia.

In terms of jurisprudence, Aji often looked to the judiciaries of other nations for congruence with that of Indonesia. He asserted that the Proclamation of Indonesian Independence strongly resembled the United States Declaration of Independence, [9] and that Indonesian courts enforce customary law in private disputes, a concept similar to that of common law and law of equity. [10]

Proclamation of Indonesian Independence

The Proclamation of Indonesian Independence was read at 10:00 in the morning of Friday, 17 August 1945. The wording and declaration of the proclamation had to balance the interests of conflicting internal Indonesian and Japanese interests at the time. The declaration marked the start of the diplomatic and armed resistance of the Indonesian National Revolution, fighting against the forces of the Netherlands and pro-Dutch civilians, until the latter officially acknowledged Indonesia's independence in 1949. In 2005, the Netherlands declared that it had decided to accept de facto 17 August 1945 as Indonesia's independence date. However, on 14 September 2011, a Dutch court ruled in the Rawagede massacre case that the Dutch state was responsible because it had the duty to defend its inhabitants, which also indicated that the area was part of the Dutch East Indies, in contradiction of the Indonesian claim of 17 August 1945 as its date of independence. In a 2013 interview the Indonesian historian Sukotjo, among others, asked the Dutch government to formally acknowledge the date of independence as 17 August 1945. The United Nations recognizes the date of 27 December 1949.

United States Declaration of Independence 1776 assertion of colonial Americas independence from Great Britain

The United States Declaration of Independence is the statement adopted by the Second Continental Congress meeting at the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on July 4, 1776. The Declaration announced that the Thirteen Colonies at war with the Kingdom of Great Britain would regard themselves as thirteen independent sovereign states, no longer under British rule. With the Declaration, these new states took a collective first step toward forming the United States of America. The declaration was signed by representatives from New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia.

A legal custom is the established pattern of behavior that can be objectively verified within a particular social setting. A claim can be carried out in defense of "what has always been done and accepted by law". Related is the idea of prescription; a right enjoyed through long custom rather than positive law.

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Judicial independence is the concept that the judiciary should be independent from the other branches of government. That is, courts should not be subject to improper influence from the other branches of government or from private or partisan interests. Judicial independence is important to the idea of separation of powers.

The judiciary of Germany is the system of courts that interprets and applies the law in Germany.

Supreme Court of the Philippines Highest court in the Philippines

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Judiciary of Russia

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General Council of the Judiciary constitutional body governing the Judiciary of Spain

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The supreme court is the highest court within the hierarchy of courts in many legal jurisdictions. Other descriptions for such courts include court of last resort, apex court, and highcourt of appeal. Broadly speaking, the decisions of a supreme court are not subject to further review by any other court. Supreme courts typically function primarily as appellate courts, hearing appeals from decisions of lower trial courts, or from intermediate-level appellate courts.

Supreme Court of Spain The Supreme Court of Spain is the highest court in Spain.

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Constitutional Court of Indonesia

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Judicial independence in Singapore Judicial independence in the nation

Judicial independence is protected by Singapore's Constitution, statutes such as the State Courts Act and Supreme Court of Judicature Act, and the common law. Independence of the judiciary is the principle that the judiciary should be separated from legislative and executive power, and shielded from inappropriate pressure from these branches of government, and from private or partisan interests. It is crucial as it serves as a foundation for the rule of law and democracy.

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  1. Adriaan Bedner, Administrative Courts in Indonesia: A Socio-legal Study, pg. 26. Leiden: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2001. ISBN   9789041116338
  2. Adriaan Bedner, Administrative Courts, pg. 26.
  3. Adriaan Bedner, Administrative Courts, pg. 27.
  4. A. Massier, The Voice of the Law in Transition: Indonesian Jurists and Their Languages, 1915-2000, pg. 6. Leiden: Brill Publishers, 2008. ISBN   9789004253964
  5. Kanishka Jayasuriya, Law, Capitalism and Power in Asia: The Rule of Law and Legal Institutions, pg. 250. London: Routledge, 1999. ISBN   9780415197427
  6. Adriaan Bedner, Administrative Courts, pg. 31.
  7. A. Massier, The Voice of the Law, pg. 246.
  8. Kanishka Jayasuriya, Law, Capitalism and Power, pg. 245.
  9. Roshan T. Jose, Constitutional and legal systems of ASEAN countries, pg. 57. Quezon: University of the Philippines College of Law, 1990.
  10. Roshan T. Jose, Constitutional and legal systems, pg. 77.
Legal offices
Preceded by
Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Indonesia
Succeeded by