Bulgarian President Radev seeks Constitutional Court ruling on constitutional amendments

Bulgarian President Roumen Radev has filed a complaint on January 8 with the country’s Constitutional Court, asking it to rule on the constitutional amendments passed by the country’s National Assembly last month.

Radev had previously signalled his intent to challenge the changes and has now formally done so, saying that a number of provisions were inconsistent and changed the balance of powers between institutions, which was the remit of a Grand National Assembly, rather than a regular parliament.

His complaint targeted a number of provisions curtailing presidential powers, such as the limitations imposed on the process of caretaker prime ministers appointed by the president, as well as removing the requirement of a presidential decree in appointing the heads of the country’s two high courts and the prosecutor-general.

Radev, who previously spoke in favour of allowing dual nationals to hold high office in Bulgaria, criticised the amendment that allows such individuals to hold ministerial positions and member of parliament, but not stand for election as president, saying that it breached the principles of national sovereignty and rule of law.

Radev also implied that the amendments were passed in breach of procedural rules, with the second and third readings only a day apart.

The Constitutional Court will first have to decide whether the complaint is admissible and if so, will formally constitute a case. However, if it does take on the case, a ruling is not expected before the second half of this year at the earliest, given the court’s previous track record.

(Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer)

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