Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has launched a new bid to overhaul Italy’s judicial system.
The scandal embattled premier, who faces trials involving corruption and sex allegations, has said the reforms will make the legal process faster and fairer.
Critics accuse him of trying to undermine the judiciary’s independence and shield himself from prosecution.
But Berlusconi insisted the measures had been a long-time in the pipeline.
‘‘This reform was already being considered in 1994, when I entered politics. I have told the activists in my party that I will not leave politics until this reform is introduced,’‘ Berlusconi said.
The reforms are unlikely any time soon, would not be retrospective and would take at least a two thirds majority to pass in parliament.
Despite that, opposition leader Antonio Di Pietro’s scepticism was apparent.
‘‘Parliament must decide what crimes judges can investigate. We can not investigate all crimes, only those where there is a consensus among MPs. Have a guess on which side MPs will be on.’‘ Di Pietro said.
Along with three separate corruption cases, Berlusconi has also been ordered to stand trial for allegedly paying for sex with an under-age prostitute, known as Ruby. He has vehemently denied all charges.