During a press briefing on Thursday, Portnov said that the president has submitted relevant bill amending the Constitution of Ukraine regarding justice to the parliament and hopes that the parliamentary majority will support it.
“It is for the first time proposed to cancel the appointment of judges for a five-year term… The head of state suggested that the parliament should change the procedure and appoint judges for unlimited term, once and until the end of career,” Portnov said.
He added that Yanukovych also proposed to reorganize and dissolve courts by laws of Ukraine, and not by presidential decrees.
The president’s bill also deals with change of authorities of the Supreme Court of Ukraine and amendment of regulations on the parliament’s participation in the appointment and dismissal of judges.
The president also proposed to remove from the constitution sentences about a five-year term of prosecutor general of Ukraine.
Portnov added that two options for determining prosecutor general’s term in office are being considered – unlimited terms and appointment for at least seven years if this term does not coincide with the terms of the president and the parliament.
Once one of the options is selected, it will be added to the public prosecution bill, which is being drawn up, the presidential advisor said.
The president also proposed a new procedure to form the Supreme Council of Justice, as well as amendments to the current procedure of stripping judges of immunity. In particular, according to Portnov, the Supreme Council of Justice will have to give its consent to bringing a judge to responsibility by recommendation of the High Qualifications Commission of Judges.
Portnov stressed that the bill was in line with the best European traditions, rulings of the European Court of Human Rights, numerous resolutions of the PACE and has underwent expert assessment by the Venice Commission.
He added that the Venice Commission has approved all of the abovementioned president’s draft amendments to the constitution.
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