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    As announced yesterday by its first president, Małgorzata Gersdorf, the Polish Supreme Court met today in a meeting of its three chambers: the Civil, Criminal and Labour. The meeting considered whether the new judges appointed at the request of the new National Council of the Judiciary by President Andrzej Duda are legitimately appointed judges. Duda’s position is that the action of the Supreme Court violates the Polish constitutional order.

    The meeting of three chambers of the Supreme Court convened as scheduled, despite the fact that by law it should have been suspended as soon as the matter was taken under consideration by the Constitutional Tribunal. It is within the jurisdiction of that body to decide whether the new judges appointed at the request of the new National Council of the Judiciary by President Andrzej Duda are legitimate judges.

    “The president of the Supreme Court Disciplinary Chamber, Tomasz Przesławski, communicated to the first president of the Supreme Court, Małgorzata Gersdorf a complaint that the procedure of calling of a Supreme Court session with only three chambers is wrong, because it ignores the Disciplinary Chamber and it violates the Supreme Court Act. In this situation, that motion to call a meeting should be amended or cancelled altogether” said Piotr Falkowski, the Spokesman for the Disciplinary Chamber. 

    According to President Andrzej Duda the Supreme Court should not deal with this issue because it is the president who has the indisputable prerogative of nominating judges of the National Council of the Judiciary. The following was stated by the deputy chief of the president’s chancellery:

    “In the light of the ruling by the European Union Court of Justice, I frankly say that I do not see any legal basis justifying the formulation of such judicial questions. They are as imaginary as the decision of the Supreme Court’s first president to call a meeting of three chambers of that court. This is being challenged by many lawyers, on the basis of the regulations of the Supreme Court itself. They are violating their own rules.”

    It is not yet known, when exactly the Constitutional Tribunal will issue a ruling on the competence dispute between the Supreme Court, the lower chamber of parliament called Sejm and the President. According to prof. Waldemar Gontarski, Poland’s representative at the Court of Justice of the European Union, by ignoring the position of the Constitutional Tribunal the Supreme Court would put itself above the law.


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