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National Council of the Judiciary. Resolution on the neo-National Council of the Judiciary adopted by the Sejm

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In the evening vote, the Sejm adopted a resolution on the neo-National Council of the Judiciary. It was indicated that three resolutions of the Sejm from 2018, 2021 and 2022 on the election of judges-members of the new National Council of the Judiciary were adopted in gross violation of the constitution. Some Council members were also called upon to immediately cease their activities.

On Wednesday evening, the Sejm adopted a resolution “on eliminating the effects of the constitutional crisis in the context of the political position and functions of the National Council of the Judiciary in a democratic state ruled by law.” Its project was submitted by a group of MPs from KO, PSL-TD, Polski 2050-TD and the Left.

The resolution indicated that three resolutions of the Sejm of 2018, 2021 and 2022 regarding choice judges-members of the National Council of the Judiciary were undertaken in gross violation of the constitution. Members of the National Council of the Judiciary elected contrary to the constitution were called upon to cease their activities in the Council.

239 MPs voted for the resolution, 169 against, and no one abstained. The resolution was supported by MPs from the Civic Coalition, Poland 2050-Third Way, PSL-Third Way and the Left. They were against it PiS MPs and the Confederation. 52 MPs did not take part in the vote, including 40 PiS MPs.

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Bodnar: we have a constitutional problem with one of the bodies

Minister of Justice Adam Bodnar answering questions asked by MPs during the debate, he said that this “resolution is necessary”. – It has a symbolic meaning from the point of view of indicating that we simply have a constitutional problem with one of the bodies that has a very important function in the state – he emphasized.

He said that “for us, this resolution is the beginning of the process.” – It’s not like it’s going to be a resolution and that’s it, and nothing else. This week I had a meeting with non-governmental organizations that have been working over the last months and years to solve the problem of the National Council of the Judiciary. They have draft laws regarding the National Council of the Judiciary. There is a Senate bill that was prepared by the Senate of the previous term. Only that, unlike the previous Minister of Justice, I do not intend to ask one or another MP who will suddenly collect signatures and submit a bill to the Sejm, I simply want to carry out a normal procedure. legislative process – noted the head of the Ministry of Justice.

He explained that “the legislative process will be carried out normally and will analyze these acts.” – Assumptions will be prepared, the act will be presented and passed – emphasized Bodnar.

However, as he noted, “with the resolution we would like to indicate that we have a specific, large, gigantic problem with the rule of law due to the functioning of a body such as the National Council of the Judiciary in this form, with these 15 members of the National Council of the Judiciary.”

PiS MPs opposed the resolution. During the debate on the bill, Sebastian Kaleta argued that its adoption would not have any legal effects, but would be a source of anarchy in the courts. – This resolution destroys Polish sovereignty, elevates the status of the judicial caste above the power of the nation and recognizes the EU protectorate over our system – said Kaleta.

Resolution on the neo-KRS

The adopted resolution concerns changes introduced by the amendment to the Act on the National Council of the Judiciary of December 8, 2017, which changed the procedure for electing judges-members of the National Council of the Judiciary. The 15 judge-members of the Council are elected by the Sejm, and not, as before, by the judicial community.

The resolution recalled that in accordance with Art. 186 section 1 of the Constitution, the basic constitutional function of the National Council of the Judiciary is to safeguard the independence of courts and judges. It was noted that this function can only be performed properly when the National Council of the Judiciary is an independent body and independent of other authorities.

1. The National Council of the Judiciary safeguards the independence of courts and judges.

As stated, the guarantees of this independence and independence are provided for in Art. 187 section 1 and 3 of the Constitution, which determine the composition of the National Council of the Judiciary and establish a 4-year term of office for its elected members. The main part of the composition of the National Council of the Judiciary – in accordance with Art. 187 section 1 point 2 of the Constitution – should consist of representatives of judges of the Supreme Court, common courts, administrative courts and military courts.

“The election of representatives of the judicial community to the National Council of the Judiciary should therefore be autonomous and carried out by the judicial community, without the possibility of active participation of the legislative and executive authorities,” it was emphasized.

In the resolution, the Sejm states that three resolutions of the Sejm of March 6, 2018, May 20, 2021 and May 12, 2022 on the election of judicial members of the National Council of the Judiciary were adopted in gross violation of the constitution.

“The result of their decision was to shape the composition of the National Council of the Judiciary in a manner inconsistent with the Constitution of the Republic of Poland, the Treaty on European Union and the Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, and, as a consequence, the loss of the National Council of the Judiciary’s ability to implement its constitutional functions and tasks, including in particular the ability to safeguard the independence of courts and judges,” we read.

The Sejm calls on some members of the new National Council of the Judiciary to immediately cease their activities

In the resolution, the Sejm calls on the members of the new National Council of the Judiciary, elected to its membership contrary to the constitution, to immediately cease their activities in the National Council of the Judiciary, as they undermine the constitutional order of the Republic of Poland.

“The Sejm of the Republic of Poland declares to take action to restore compliance of the legal status with constitutional and international standards, and calls on public authorities, in particular the President of the Republic of Poland, to immediately take actions aimed at restoring the political position and functions specified in the Constitution to the National Council of the Judiciary. the Republic of Poland and appropriate for a democratic state of law,” the draft states.

Main photo source: TVN24



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