Polish tribunal strikes down government bill as constitutional crisis extends

By bne IntelliNews December 10, 2015

Poland’s constitutional court ruled against the government again on December 9, however, the new government insists it will not back down.

Known as the Constitutional Tribunal, the court ruled that key provisions of a bill seeking to regulate the court's functioning, pushed through the parliament by the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) in late November, were in breach of the Polish constitution. The ruling extends the constitutional crisis raging in Poland since early December.

At that time, PiS elected five new judges to the tribunal, seeking to replace a group elected by the previous parliament, under the Civic Platform (PO) government. However, the tribunal ruled three of five judges appointed by the previous parliament legitimate. The latest ruling effectively calls again for the government to allow the appointment of the trio.

Government affiliated President Andrzej Duda swore the PiS appointees in anyway, in a late night ceremony. He has at the same time refused to swear in the three PO-appointed judges ruled legitimate by tribunal. That, according to some, is a clear violation of the constitution.

On December 9, the tribunal once more ruled against the new government, denied the legitimacy of a bill seeking to change some aspects of the tribunal’s functioning, such as ending of the term of the current head of the court and his deputy.

The ruling also stated directly that none of the five PiS-appointed judges can work in the tribunal as they were appointed illegally. The government pushed their nomination through parliament via an ordinary vote; the rules require a parliamentary resolution.

However, PiS appears unfazed. “[The ruling] means the parliament needs to do some more work on the bill. As for [the PiS-appointed judges], the case is closed,” said Stanislaw Piotrowicz, head of the parliamentary justice committee, referring to the swearing in of the judges by the president.

The statement only appears to confirm the current mess, with Poland having in effect two sets of constitutional judges, one questioning the legitimacy of the other.

 

Related Articles

Poland isolated again as it threatens to block EU declaration

Poland will not sign the Rome Declaration if its demands for moulding the EU’s future are not reflected in the document, Prime Minister Beata Szydlo threatened on March 23. The statement could ... more

Polish ruling party's poll lead hit by EU spat

The popularity of Poland’s ruling party Law and Justice (PiS) has fallen below 30% for the first time since mid-2014, a poll showed on March 20. The survey, published by liberal newspaper ... more

Enea buys French utility out of Poland

Enea has acquired a 100% stake in Engie Energia Polska - the Polish business of French power company Engie - for PLN1.26bn (€290mn), the state controlled Polish utility said on March 14. The ... more

Register here to continue reading this article and 2 more for free or purchase 12 months full website access including the bne Magazine for just $119/year.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

To continue viewing our content you need to complete the registration process.

Please look for an email that was sent to with the subject line "Confirmation bne IntelliNews access". This email will have instructions on how to complete registration process. Please check in your "Junk" folder in case this communication was misdirected in your email system.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and magazine

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and monthly magazine, the leading source of business, economic and financial news and commentary in emerging markets.

Your subscription includes:
  • Full access to the bne content daily news and features on the website
  • Newsletters direct to your mailbox
  • Print and digital subscription to the monthly bne magazine
  • Digital subscription to the weekly bne newspaper

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

bne IntelliNews
$119 per year

All prices are in US dollars net of applicable taxes.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Register for free to read bne IntelliNews Magazine. You'll receive a free digital subscription.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

IntelliNews Pro offers daily news updates delivered to your inbox and in-depth data reports.
Get the emerging markets newswire that financial professionals trust.

"No day starts for my team without IntelliNews Pro" — UBS

Thank-you for requesting an IntelliNews Pro trial. Our team will be in contact with you shortly.

Dismiss