Polish president vetoes controversial judicial bills

Source: Xinhua| 2017-07-24 21:20:08|Editor: Song Lifang
Video PlayerClose

WARSAW, July 24 (Xinhua) -- Polish President Andrzej Duda said on Monday he decided to veto two of the three judicial bills passed recently by both houses of Polish Parliament, the Sejm and Senat.

The two bills vetoed aimed at reorganizing the Supreme Court and the National Council of the Judiciary (KRS). The third act, the common courts bill, would however be signed, according to the president's spokesman.

Duda said that according to the Polish constitutional tradition, the prosecutor general never had oversight powers over the Supreme Court, or the power to decide who can be a judge of the Supreme Court. He also expressed doubts about the Prosecutor General deciding on the Court's internal regulations.

Referring to recent protests against the law reform, Duda emphasized that the legislation cannot raise so much controversy: "I want to improve these laws as part of my legislative initiative as president so that the Polish justice system is upgraded, so that Poland becomes a better country; stronger, fairer, and safe. This is my responsibility as president."

Duda announced that he would return the vetoed bills to the Sejm and that he would draft two new pieces of legislation within two months with the help of experts.

The ruling Law and Justice party (PiS) proposed splitting the Supreme Court into three chambers, changing appointment regulations for its judges and retiring its present judges. The bill was passed by Sejm on July 20 and by the Senat on July 22.

The reform bill on Poland's Supreme Court has stirred up controversies in Poland and abroad.

The European Commission has expressed "grave concern" for "the clear risks for the independence of the judiciary" in Poland, saying it would take legal action against Warsaw in the wake of the series of judiciary bills proposed.