Queensland barristers have again hit out at the appointment of Tim Carmody as chief justice and have asked him to step aside.
The new head of Queensland’s Bar Association says Tim Carmody must reconsider taking on the job of chief justice, and his appointment has damaged public confidence in the Supreme Court.
The bar association’s former president Peter Davis resigned on June 13 in protest over the circumstances surrounding Mr Carmody’s appointment.
On Monday, its new head Shane Doyle QC urged Mr Carmody to rethink his position, amid savage opposition by many senior legal figures.
“The government’s decision, the processes employed and the manner in which it was promoted, did not have the support of the bar association, then or now,” Mr Doyle said in a letter to members.
“The bar association also respectfully asks that he reconsider whether to take up the position of chief justice.
“The … selection of Judge Carmody … and the manner in which that decision has been promoted and defended, has resulted in widely held concerns about the appointment which are serving to damage the Supreme Court of Queensland and the public confidence in it.”
Mr Carmody was recruited as chief magistrate from the bar nine months ago and will serve as the state’s 18th Chief Justice of the Supreme Court from July 8, despite never sitting on it.
The appointment has split the legal fraternity, and high-ranking judges and members of the judiciary have said he should not be in the job.
Among his critics are corruption fighter Tony Fitzgerald, sitting Court of Appeal Justice John Muir, former Crown Solicitor Walter Sofronoff QC and former Supreme Court judge Richard Chesterman QC.
Premier Campbell Newman says Mr Carmody also has a lot of supporters and will be a great chief justice.
“He has my utter and unequivocal support,” Mr Newman said.
“Everyone should get on with the job of getting behind him now.”