The ruling Smer party will not back a programme including a special parliamentary session where the opposition parties wanted to discuss the diminishing trustworthiness of the Slovak judiciary, the TASR newswire reported.
The initiative by representatives of the opposition parties united in the People’s Platform, i.e. the Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ), the Christian Democratic Movement (KDH) and Most-Híd, is “irresponsible” given the current situation, according to Speaker of Parliament Pavol Paška, who is a Smer nominee.
“We will discuss the year’s most important law next week, that is the act on Slovakia’s 2013 budget, and a marathon of talks on highly important related laws lies ahead of us and we need to discuss them before the debate on the State Budget Act is even opened,” he said, as quoted by TASR, adding that “critical moments and tension accompanying the drafting and shaping of such an important law”.
Though Smer is ready to discuss the issues initiated by the opposition, it is not willing to do so before MPs pass the draft budget and as long as the debate includes the people concerned, Paška stressed.
Current Justice Minister Tomáš Borec said that the issues concerning the judicial system are serious ones.
“It is necessary to discuss them and they have to be discussed properly on an expert level, but there is nothing to deal with [concerning the judiciary] with respect to parliament at the moment,” he said, as quoted by TASR.
Borec added that some opposition political parties are just looking for an agenda to run with.
Meanwhile, former justice minister Lucia Žitňanská said that the opposition parties have at least one reason to submit a proposal to dismiss Borec as justice minister. One of these is the government’s standpoint on the case that Štefan Harabin, the president of the Supreme Court, has brought before the European Court for Human Rights (ECHR), complaining about a cut in his salary passed by the previous government following his refusal to allow Finance Ministry auditors to examine his court’s accounts.
Žitňanská said that the cabinet had failed to defend the interests of the state at the ECHR, and had chosen to back Harabin’s interests instead. Borec should therefore be dismissed, she concluded last week.
For more information about this story please see: Opposition to discuss the state of judiciary at special session
Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports
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