Constitutional Court in Ukraine okays presidential bill on lifting parliamentary immunity
The presidential bill on the removal of parliamentary immunity from January 1, 2020, was recognized as constitutional, according to a corresponding conclusion handed down by the Constitutional Court, its press service reports.
The draft law proposes to amend Article 80 of the Constitution of Ukraine, stating that "People's deputies of Ukraine do not bear legal responsibility for the results of voting or statements voiced in parliament and its bodies, except for responsibility for insult or libel. The law shall be enforced from January 1, 2020."
The CCU says that neither in Ukraine as a whole not in some of its localities, no martial law or emergency situation was declared, therefore there are no legal grounds making it impossible to amend the Constitution Ukraine.
"In view of the above, the Constitutional Court considers that the draft law meets the requirements of Part 2 Article 157 of the Constitution of Ukraine," the decision stresses.
Also, the judges of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine in their conclusion note that the Court repeatedly considered draft laws on amendments to Article 80 of the Constitution of Ukraine regarding the limitation of parliamentary immunity and handed down the conclusion that the proposed changes on its abolition concern only their special status and do not affect the content of constitutional rights and freedoms of an individual and citizen (their cancellation or restriction), and therefore do not contradict the requirements of Part 1 Article 157 of the Constitution of Ukraine.
"At the time of consideration by the Constitutional Court of this case, there are no grounds for changing the legal positions stated earlier on the same issues," the CCU added.
In addition, the Court notes it has repeatedly stressed that "the immunity of people's deputies of Ukraine is not a personal privilege or their individual right, it is rather of a public legal nature; it is aimed at ensuring protection of people's deputies of Ukraine from unlawful interference in their activities, ensuring unimpeded and effective implementation of their functions and the proper functioning of Parliament.