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Constitutional Court : There are unconstitutionality elements in draft constitutional revision law

Romania's Constitutional Court (CCR) judges found unconstitutionality elements in the draft law to revise the Constitution submitted by the Romanian president, Traian Basescu. The Court found that several amendments President Basescu proposed are unconstitutional.

According to CCR, the drastic limitation on the immunity of the parliamentarians and the ministers, the removal of the assumption that gains and wealth are obtained illegally, the appointment of someone who is not a judge or a prosecutor, at the head of the Superior Council of Magistracy, the removal of the legal control over the decisions on the tax and the budget policies, are the unconstitutional proposals to the Constitution's revision bill.The Court stated that the presumption that wealth has been obtained legally derives from the presumption of innocence. Eliminating the presumption of legally-obtained wealth entails that the principle of presumption of innocence is relative and also breaches the right to private property.

The Constitutional Court (CCR) assent is advisory. Subsequently, the revision draft, accompanied by the Legislative Council opinion and by CCR ruling is to be forwarded to the Parliament for debate and approval.

Romanian President Basescu on June 9 sent the Constitutional Court the draft revised Constitution, together with the Legislative Council's endorsement. He also invited the parliamentary groups to a discussion on territorial-administrative reorganization and the Constitution revision, on June 21.
PM Boc: By CCR ruling on Constitution revision we lose battle, not war
Prime Minister Emil Boc said that the Constitutional Court of Romania's (CCR) ruling on the draft Constitution revision put forward by President Traian Basescu is only a lost battle, not a lost war. Boc, at debates on the Constitution revision held in Cluj-Napoca (central-western Romania) on Saturday, called the CCR ruling ‘strange' and said he failed to understand the ‘double standard' used by the judges now on the one hand and in 2003, on the other.

'The Constitutional Court said that parliamentary immunity cannot be restricted. Such a ruling of the CCR is debatable and strange. Let me explain myself: In 2003, when the Constitution was revised, the parliamentary immunity was restricted too. Before 2003, nobody could have been prosecuted without being stripped of their parliamentary immunity by a two-thirds majority in each house of Parliament. The parliamentary immunity was restricted in 2003 and it was stipulated that a lawmaker can be prosecuted without the house assent, but a lawmaker cannot be detained, arrested and searched. ... That is why I fail to understand such double standard: it was possible to restrain immunity in 2003, but it is not possible now', he said.

The Prime Minister insisted that Parliament must find a formula ‘to meet the people's expectations'.
At a press briefing after the debates, Boc said only a battle was lost in the fight against the illegally-amassed wealth by the CCR ruling.

'The CCR rulings are observed, they must be enforced because they are generally binding and they produce effect for the future. Consequently, the Parliament will have to take the CCR ruling into account when analysing the constitutional texts. I'm only saying that some of the texts can be worked out in Parliament, taking the CCR ruling into account, so as to meet the goal of giving the possibility to seize the illegally gained wealth and that the corruption acts no longer be a source for procuring vast wealth. We must do this and I think no principle in the Constitution can defend us from the illegally-gained wealth or from the wealth built on fraud. That is why I said we lost a battle, not the war with illegal wealth', he underscored.

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