On Tuesday, October 3, in honour of the first Chief Justice of the Senate of Latvia – Kristaps Valters who was born in Kuldiga, representatives of the Supreme Court planted a memorial oak in Kuldiga and visited the Senator's resting place in Rumba parish. With this event, the Supreme Court initiated the centenary anniversary of the Senate of Latvia.

The oak tree will flourish in the Kuldiga town garden, which was planted by three Chief Justices of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Latvia - Gvido Zemribo, Andris Gulans and Ivars Bickovics, together with the Chair of the Kuldiga District Council Inga Berzina.

According to Ivars Bickovics, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, this oak is an assurance of esteem not only for one outstanding personality, but for the entire Senate of Latvia, which laid the foundations for Latvia as a lawful state and was the root of the tree on which all its life is based. "There is no doubt, and we are proud that the roots of the Latvian judicial system have been strong and healthy; a judicial system created from scratch almost 100 years ago has proved to be viable and also today it is the basis that gives us the opportunity to work in a state governed by the rule of law," says Ivars Bickovics.

Oak is a symbolic demonstration of the patriotism, integrity and power that was needed and what was the basis for the founders of Latvia, including lawyers, especially the judges of the highest court instance. "This is something that cannot be forgotten. This is the golden fund of our Latvian judicial system," says Gvido Zemribo, the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in the restored Latvia.

Andris Gulans, the former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, also emphasized the life principles that were typical of the founders of the judicial system and were also clearly manifested in the personality of Kristaps Valters:  honesty, independence and the benefit for the state over their own interests.

"The value of every municipality is their people. We are proud of our people who have contributed to development not only of Kuldiga, but of the whole state," said Inga Berzina, Chair of Kuldiga District Council. Lija Sele, Head of the Rumba Parish Administration, acknowledged that they were pleased that, because of the encouragement by the Supreme Court, they have learned a lot of valuable information about their fellow townsman. They will ensure that one stone from the ruins of the Kristaps Valters home in Dindzi is moved and placed next to his memorial oak.


See more:

Re:TV: The first Senator Kristaps Valters is honoured in Kuldiga (in Latvian)

LTV: The first Senator Kristaps Valters is honoured in Kuldiga (in Latvian)

The Senate of Latvia was the highest judicial institution in Latvia in 1918-1940. Kristaps Valters together with Janis Graudins were appointed as first senators in 1918. In 1919 Valters became the first Chair of the Senate's Department of Administrative Cases, but in 1920 he became the first Chair of the Senate Assembly. The Supreme Court is the continuator of the work and traditions of the Senate of the Republic of Latvia and considers its responsibility to keep alive the memory of the senators.


Information prepared by

Rasma Zvejniece, the Head of the Division of Communication of the Supreme Court

E-mail: rasma.zvejniece@at.gov.lv, telephone: +371 67020396, +371 28652211