Victor Yushchenko met with the judges of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine on Tuesday, according to the President`s press-office.
The President said he had decided to speak to them because of the “critical mass of civil rights violations.” He also said he was worried the judges were being pressured to use their decisions politically but expressed confidence they would be apolitical and impartial.
“I would like to articulate how I see the political situation because its development will greatly depend on and linked to what the Constitutional Court does. So let me tell you how I see these problems, pursuing only one goal. The country is in crisis. There are no indications this crisis has been or is being resolved. Each political week brings new complications, which violate the rights and freedoms of the citizens. There is a conspicuous usurpation of power. There is obvious violation of the constitution. I am convinced that this is a real attack on Ukraine’s constitutional order and its victims are our citizens, whose rights and freedoms are violated. In fact, the political results of the parliamentary election are being revised. I am saying this so expressively and straightforwardly to make you understand my message, and my message is that it is imperative to preserve law. This is the essence of my appeal,” he said.
“I see my relationship with the Constitutional Court of Ukraine as a relationship defined by Ukraine’s constitution. All the judges, whoever elected them, are equal to me. I am convinced that you are the only institution of constitutional jurisdiction in Ukraine. You are a solidary body and you make your decisions as a group. The second thing I would like to emphasize is that I must ensure that the Constitutional Court or any other court or any other law enforcement agency never become politicized. You understand that this pressure will be growing every week and that there will be lots of colossal political debates every day on what the Constitutional Court does, and all those debates are aimed at finding ways to influence your rulings, for the problems you consider and discuss here are truly fateful, and there is no exaggeration in my words. We can either be a democratic country and democratically react to all the challenges we are facing today, including those political discussions involving political forces and branches of power, or we can make the same mistakes we made recently. The Constitutional Court has a unique mission which has no alternatives, and this mission is to keep our political processes within legal boundaries. This is the greatest favor you can do our society and government,” he said.
The President said the Constitutional Court was now analyzing many controversial legislations. He believes their rulings will help end arbitrary interpretations of the constitution and political attempts to use the supreme law to benefit this or that group or party. He called on the judges to consider these appeals without delay.