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Sulík: Draft bill was backdated to circumvent rules of procedure

A new bill was backdated in parliament in such a way as to meet the lawful deadline even though it was delivered a day too late, Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) chairman Richard Sulík claimed at a press conference held on Tuesday, April 24.

A new bill was backdated in parliament in such a way as to meet the lawful deadline even though it was delivered a day too late, Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) chairman Richard Sulík claimed at a press conference held on Tuesday, April 24.

"April 17 was the final day when a legislative proposal could have been submitted. The rules of procedure explicitly forbid Speaker of Parliament Pavol Paška [Smer] from adding any proposal to the session's agenda after this deadline," Sulík said, as quoted by the TASR newswire. According to Sulík, the Act on Network Industries Regulation drafted by Smer lawmakers Maroš Kondrót and Andrej Kolesík was delivered on April 18, as corroborated by the older registry of received proposals. However, the current registry contains April 17 as the day of delivery. Sulík thinks that this is no mistake. "The proposal must unconditionally contain the statement of the finance minister. However, according to the date, this was written only after the deadline," Sulík said.

"SaS will file a proposal with the Mandate and Immunity Committee to initiate a disciplinary action. At the same time, it calls on Parliamentary Speaker Pavol Paška to strike the bill in question off the agenda," Sulík concluded.

The Sme daily quoted Paška as saying that the date was simply an error by the official who submitted the documents to the online version. However, the Finance Ministry’s opinion, which is an addendum to the draft, is dated April 18. Sme quoted Paška’s spokesman Pavol Chovanec as saying that it was possible to add documents and approvals later. The newspaper reported that the draft bill is intended to allow the state (and thus the ruling party) to increase its powers over the pricing of gas.

Sources: TASR, Sme

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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