Frank Clarke to be Chief Justice - We wish him well

At last: A senior judicial appointment made by the Government without acrimony.

The choice of Supreme Court judge Frank Clarke to succeed Susan Denham is a welcome one on a number of levels.

In the first instance, he is one of the most influential figures on the Supreme Court, showing himself to be a liberal and fearless champion of human rights, exhibiting concern in a number of cases about the difficulty of people without power or influence gaining access to justice.

That may be derived in part from the fact that he does not come from a legal background and, indeed, was the first member of his family to go to university.

As a dynamic champion of judicial independence, Susan Denham, the first woman to be made Chief Justice, will be a hard act to follow.

Judging from his judicial work to date, the signs are that Frank Clarke will rise to the occasion. The only partiality he ever exhibits is outside the bench, as a Leinster Rugby season ticket holder.

We wish him well in his appointment and Ms Denham in her retirement.

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