Who controls the judiciary? A path toward the judicial accountability in Brazil

Who guards the guardians? The political role of the Judiciary brings with it the need to rebalance independence and accountability, through the qualification of judicial policy. A combination of the European Networks of Councils for the Judiciary (ENCJ) indicators and Sherry Arnstein’s Ladder of Citizen Participation appears to use a more in-depth analysis of judicial accountability. To test this hypothesis, we proceed to the analysis of the judicial policy operated in Brazil by the National Council of Justice, on the indicators of the ENCJ and the Ladder of Participation. The results achieved or ENCJ’s indicators can be met without increasing judicial accountability, because the level of participation and social control contemplated in the accountability mechanisms favor mainly passive citizens, emptying social responsibility. The increase in judicial social accountability then seems to be necessary for the legitimacy of the Judiciary to be strengthened and its independence ensured.