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President’s judicial reform bills being ‘analysed’: Polish gov’t spokesman

PR dla Zagranicy
Grzegorz Siwicki 28.09.2017 12:56
Groups of experts and lawyers are busy analysing President Andrzej Duda’s newly submitted proposals for changes to Poland’s justice system, the government spokesman said on Thursday.
Photo: Activedia/pixabay.com/CC0 Creative CommonsPhoto: Activedia/pixabay.com/CC0 Creative Commons

The president’s proposals for reorganising the country's Supreme Court and the National Council of the Judiciary "are being examined in both parliament and at the justice ministry," Rafał Bochenek told public broadcaster TVP 1.

The government will take a position on the bills after “thoroughly familiarising” itself with them, he said, adding that Prime Minister Beata Szydło's government "has welcomed certain solutions contained in the president's proposals.”

Bochenek also said that judicial reform was a key priority for Poland's conservative government and the country’s ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party.

On Monday, President Duda unveiled his much-awaited proposals for legal changes in the country. On Tuesday, the bills were submitted to parliament.

On Wednesday, Duda said in a press interview that people in Poland wanted to see positive change, not a revolution, in the country’s judiciary.

Legal wrangle

In late July, Duda vetoed two of three controversial government-backed bills that would have given officials significant powers in appointing and dismissing court judges.

He announced he would draw up his own alternatives to the two vetoed bills within two months.

Jarosław Kaczyński, the leader of Poland’s ruling conservatives, said at the time that the president’s decision to veto two of the judicial reform bills was a "serious mistake.”

The conservative government in Warsaw has said that the judiciary in Poland is inefficient and sometimes corrupt and in need of significant changes.

Supporters of Poland’s ruling conservatives have criticised the country’s courts for taking too long to hear cases, and have accused judges of being an elite, self-serving clique often out of touch with the problems of ordinary citizens.

But the opposition has accused the government of aiming to pack courts with loyalists and of dismantling the rule of law with the reforms.

Poland is locked in a dispute with the European Commission over legal changes in the country. (gs)

Source: PAP

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