Slovakian President Čaputová is ready to veto changes to the criminal codes and has not ruled out a petition to the Constitutional Court, if the government coalition of Prime Minister Robert Fico passes the relevant amendments to the laws in the lower house in an accelerated mode. Čaputová told journalists today.
Proposals that include, for example, the abolition of the elite unit of the Slovak prosecutor’s office and the reduction of punishments for corruption, among other things, were approved by the government without a wider professional discussion on Wednesday, and the parliament has already included them in the agenda of its current meeting. The government has enough MPs in the lower house to override a possible veto by the head of state.
The Special Prosecutor’s Office (ÚSP) was established in 2004 in connection with the fight against organized crime and corruption. Fico began to criticize him as an opposition politician, and after the police under the supervision of the ÚSP began to investigate various cases from the time of the previous government of Fico’s Direction-Social Democracy party. She accused several dozen people in them, including former high-ranking officials, police officers, judges and businessmen.
“I consider such serious changes adopted in an abbreviated legislative procedure to be a procedure contrary to the principles of the rule of law. This is such a serious proposal to amend the laws that I cannot imagine that I would not use the right of veto,” said Čaputová. She also described as realistic the possibility of submitting an initiative to the Constitutional Court in the whole matter.
According to Čaputová, there are no reasons for parliament to discuss changes to criminal codes and related laws in an accelerated mode. For example, the government has proposed that the ÚSP cease to exist in the middle of January next year.