Justice portal leaves courts functioning like islands

Justice portal leaves courts functioning like islands

Three months on and many more times declared “in full working order”, the truth is that Portugal’s justice portal CITIUS has left courts functioning like “islands” and “different countries”. Who says this is the secretary-general of the Portuguese judges syndicate Maria José Costeira, backed by the president of the judicial workers union Fernando Jorge. Jorge has further alerted to the fact that the court system is also in need of at least 1,000 extra workers.
The lack of staff is seriously compromising court work, Jorge and Costeira both affirm, with “serious risks” that hundreds if not thousands of cases will come up against time-bars and so have to be thrown-out.
The pair were talking to Lusa news agency and stressed that another serious problem of the government-led “re-drawing of the judicial map” is that many courts are still functioning in less than ideal circumstances.
In some cases “building work” that has been programmed has not even started, and in courts like Loures, Faro and Porto, there is still a serious shortage of space to hear cases.
Add to that CITIUS’ ongoing problems and Portugal remains locked in an unworkable situation.
As Costeira told Lusa, “there are still cases that have not made it into the CITIUS system”. These are generally bankruptcy cases, which have come up since September 1 – the day the new judicial system began and CITIUS promptly crashed, losing an estimated 44 days of court time.