Venice Commission urges the Gov’t to limit GEOs, says Special Section obstructs fight against corruption

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The Venice Commission urges the Romanian authorities to drastically limit the emergency ordinances, a draft opinion regarding GEO 7/2019 and GEO 12/2019 reads. The two GEOs have turned thousands of magistrates to protests early this year.

The draft, quoted by ziare.com, reads that the most problematic issues in the field of justice in 2018, mentioned in the opinion released in October 2018, are in place, some of them being worse.

“Most concerning is that the Government continues to decide legislative amendments by emergency ordinances,” the Venice Commission says.

It also says the judicial texts are unclear, perturbing the judicial security.

On the other hand, the Venice Commission experts say that the reasons for establishing the Special Section for Investigating Magistrates (SIIJ) are unclear.

The SIIJ prosecutors have been appointed from the prosecutors’ section with the Superior Council of Magistracy (CSM), thus taking them out of the decision-making process, against the institutional concept for CSM. Moreover, it is unclear if the prosecutors and the chief prosecutor are under the control of the Prosecutor General,” the experts say.

“This may consolidate the opinion that the actual reason of the institutional reform is to change the course of some criminal investigations,” the Venice Commission says.

It concludes that “as the section is not able to effectively solve all the causes, it risks turning into an obstruction in the fight against corruption and organized crime,” ziare.com informs.

Referring to the appointments to DIICOT, DNA or to the Prosecutor General’s Office the Commission points to the fact that the system remains the same, as the Justice Minister plays a decisive part, without being compensated by the competences of the President of Romania or of the CSM.

“A system granting the CSM prosecutors’ section a key and proactive role is recommended when appointing candidates in leading positions with the Public Ministry,” the Venice Commission recommends.

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1 Comment
  1. Timothy Douglasson says

    The persistent use of “emergency” ordinances by successive Romanian governments demonstrates an inherent immaturity and a lack of confidence in the validity of the legislation that is being proposed. By suppressing the means for public debate these surreptitious government actions are undermining democracy and creating an atmosphere of suspicion among the population. They are also losing the opportunity to produce better-quality legislation that would achieve greater public acceptance.

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