Interviews to appoint a new Chief Justice are imminent. The Judicial Services Commission have to undertake this important function. It will decide who will be Gibraltar's Chief Justice until the chosen appointee is 67 or perhaps even 72.
Substantial judicial experience is a necessary attribute before someone is appointed to this senior judicial post. Relative youth not only lacks this experience but also builds in a tenure that will be excessively long. Holding a post of such importance for too long is not conducive to the vitality and impartiality that are requisites of the judicial process.
More importantly, however, Gibraltar having just been through the tortuous and unsettling process of removal of the last incumbent should aim to appoint someone who will bring stability to the judicial system. Experience and the confidence born of experience is what is needed to achieve this.
Of course Gibraltar should aspire and indeed aim to appoint Gibraltarians to this post. It should not rush headlong to do so just for the sake of achieving such a laudable ambition.
Judge Anthony Dudley has done excellently well during his tenure as acting Chief Justice. Undoubtedly the time will come for him to be appointed to that post but has that time arrived yet? He is relatively young. His experience over the last 2 years has been enormous but to be appointed now could be premature. Certainly to be in that post potentially for in excess of 25 years is daunting. It is unlikely, also, to be conducive to a vibrant judicial system.