Principles of the Rule of Law

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At its most basic level, the rule of law is the concept that both the government and citizens know the law and obey it.

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Civics and Citizenship Education in NSW

by | May 19, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

This Report considers what civics and citizenship content students in New South Wales are exposed to. This is achieved by comparing the current civics and citizenship content of the New South Wales curriculum with the civics and citizenship content in version 8.4 of the Australian Curriculum

Tribute Judge Zahra

by | May 13, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

Peter Zahra, who died this week, was much more than the NSW District Court judge who was running the embezzlement trial of Guy Sebastian’s former manager, Titus Day.

Behind the scenes Judge Zahra was one of the biggest supporters of a program that gives law and commerce students direct access to NSW courts.

Case Study comparison on Independent Judiciary

by | May 12, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

This resource provides a comparison of the experience of judicial independence across three nations – Australia, Poland and Afghanistan, examining the role of the constitution and the associated the impacts of constitutional changes on judicial discretion and power, and therefore the achievement of the Rule of Law.

Is ICAC a Kangaroo Court?

by | May 6, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

Which parts of the kangaroo court would form part of its national integrity commission? Will appeal rights be discarded? Will the rules of evidence go? And will there be show trials with predetermined outcomes?

The Federal Election and the Registration of Political Parties

by | Apr 1, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

The Federal Election and the Registration of Political Parties High Court of Australia John Ruddick v The Commonwealth [2022] HCA 9, 25 March 2022 1.       Many, if not...

LSA Conference 2022: Rule of Law and Skaf

by | Mar 30, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

The Rule of Law Education Centre presentation to the Legal Studies Association Annual Conference on 31 March 2022 on 'The relationship between the Rule of Law and the...

When Government ignores Rule of Law: Nucoal

by | Mar 29, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

When Government Ignores the Rule of Law: NuCoal's Fight for fair treatmentWhen the government and those in power ignore the rule of law, innocent parties suffer. The...

Complacent Democracy: Chipping away at the Rule of Law

by | Mar 17, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

Chipping away at the Rule of LawThere will be many lessons from the war in Ukraine, some of which are already apparent. Others will emerge over time as liberal...

International Day of Women Judges

by | Mar 2, 2022 | All Posts | 0 Comments

International Day of Women JudgesAfter its inception by the UN’s general assembly in April 2021, the International Day of Women Judges is being celebrated for the first...

About Us

Rule of Law Education Centre was formed in 2009 and is an independent, politically non-partisan, gift deductible entity formed to uphold the rule of law in Australia. The Centre educates and informs about how the Magna Carta and subsequent rule of law principles have impacted and contributed to the history, culture and legal processes of Australia and to strengthen the rule of law and human rights through education.

Why the rule of law and Magna Carta are relevant today

The rule of law is an idea that all people, including those in power, should be ruled by the law and be willing to live by and obey its expectations. These important ideals come from a period 800 years ago, when King John of England was forced to agree to the terms and conditions of a Great Charter, later to become known as the Magna Carta.

These clauses were based on the expectation that everyone, including the King, would be ruled by the law and abide by it, as well as deliver justice in accordance with the law.

The following principles are fundamental to the rule of law

  • All people are ruled by the law
  • The law is clear, known, and enforced
  • The judicial system is independent and resolves disputes in a fair and
    public manner
  • All persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty
  • Checks and balances such as the separation of powers, limit the use of
    government power

Where there is no rule of law, arbitrary rule can take over in the form of authoritarianism or anarchy. Important checks and balances are notably absent under these conditions encouraging corruption and violence, resulting in dangerous and unpredictable societies.

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