Cabinet's quarantine bans contested in Constitutional Court
The Supreme Court of Ukraine has appealed to the Constitutional Court the quarantine restrictions imposed by government on May 20, 2020, according to a UNIAN correspondent.
Today, July 2, the Grand Chamber of the Constitutional Court launched a hearing in the form of written proceedings on the motion of the Supreme Court plenum.
The case concerns Cabinet Decree No. 392 "On establishing quarantine to prevent the spread of acute respiratory illness COVID-19 caused by the SARS-COV-2 coronavirus and the stages of weakening antiepidemic measures in Ukraine".
According to rapporteur judge Petro Filyuk, the Supreme Court notes in the submission that the clauses appealed provide for a number of restrictions, including on mass events with more than 10 participants, as well as salary cuts to employees of budget-funded institutions pending quarantine period to no more than 10 minimum wages.
The Supreme Court considers that quarantine is in breach of the provisions of the Constitution, in particular Article 33, which guarantees freedom of movement and free choice of place of residence, with the exception of restrictions established by law.
Such restrictions were imposed by a government decree, which is not a law, the motion stresses.
Among such restrictions is a ban on free movement of persons over the age of 60 in connection with the obligation of self-isolation.
The Supreme Court also sees a violation of Article 39 of the Constitution, which guarantees the right to peaceful assembly, in the provision of a government decree that limits public events to no more than 10 participants. The Supreme Court notes that such or any other restrictions on peaceful assemblies shall be established only by court based on the Constitution and laws of Ukraine, not a government decree.
The motion also notes that, in general, rights and freedoms of citizens, which must not be limited in any circumstances, are contained in the Basic Law. All other rights and freedoms may be restricted by law only in conditions of emergency or martial law.
"However, we can state that neither martial law nor a state of emergency were introduced in Ukraine," the Ukrainian Supreme Court said.
The motion refers to the restriction of the rights to entrepreneurial activity, which are guaranteed by Article 42 of the Constitution. Authors point that the contested decree prohibited a significant part of entrepreneurial activity, in particular with regard to public catering establishments, entertainment facilities, and passenger transport.
Also, the Supreme Court considers that Article 49 of the Constitution has been violated, which guarantees everyone the right to health care.
The government decree banned scheduled hospitalization pending the quarantine period.
The Supreme Court plenum asks the Constitutional Court to verify the government decree for its compliance with a number of articles of the Basic Law of Ukraine, in particular articles 24, 33, 39, 42, 49, 92, 126, 121, and 129-1.
The Constitutional Court has launched a closed part of the hearing on this case. Given that a decision has been made on the written form of proceedings, judges will not hear out the parties to this proceeding, only working with documents submitted to court.
As UNIAN reported earlier, on May 29, the plenum of the Supreme Court decided to apply to CSU the Cabinet's quarantine restrictions.