Mazak: One Judge in Senate Made Difference in President's Case
Kosice, March 17 (TASR) - The decision of Constitutional Court that President Andrej Kiska breached the fundamental rights of selected candidates for the posts of constitutional court judges to take up elected and non-elected public offices under equal conditions when he refused to appoint them last July is confusing and doesn't explain wherein the allegedly violation of the complainers' rights occurs, Kiska's legal representative and former Constitutional Court head Jan Mazak said on Tuesday.
The most serious fact is that it appears that actually only one judge in the senate made the difference, said Mazak, adding that Kiska's complaint against possible bias of senate member Jana Baricova, who was personally involved in the appointments last year, was rejected.
"Senate chairman Rudolf Tkacik adopted a different stance, i.e. he doesn't agree with the verdict. There was a judge who really lacked impartiality. This means that one vote in this senate decided on the result of these proceedings. It's a precedent that I can't understand," said Mazak.
The Constitutional Court decided that Kiska violated the rights of judges Eva Fulcova, Juraj Sopoliga and Miroslav Duris. The Constitutional Court at the same time overturned the respective decision of the president to reject the three candidates on July 2, 2014 and obliged Kiska to revisit the issue. Furthermore, the President's Office is supposed to pay the three judges the costs associated with the court proceedings.
Back in July 2014, Kiska decided not to appoint five out of six candidates for three vacant posts of judges at the Constitutional Court that were elected by the Smer-dominated Parliament. Following personal interviews with the bidders, Kiska decided to appoint only one judge - Baricova. All five rejected candidates subsequently challenged the president's decision at the Constitutional Court.
The case of the two remaining judges - Jan Bernat and Imrich Volkai - is being dealt with by another Constitutional Court senate, which hasn't come to a decision yet.
According to Mazak, Kiska will decide what he will do next in the matter after the case of these two judges is also concluded at the Court.