The long and much debated issue of MP immunity in Slovakia, which to date has protected MPs and other public officials from criminal prosecution, is taking centre stage again as the newly elected PM in waiting Robert Fico and his Smer-SD party have done a U-turn on their opposition to the idea, but why the sudden change of heart?
Some right-wing parties have been trying to get MP immunity scrapped for almost a decade, but always came up against a stumbling block like Smer-SD as the backing of 90 of the 150 MPs is needed to push through such a constitutional change. Yet Robert Fico’s party now looks set to scrap the privileged immunity with overwhelming support in parliament, as all the opposition parties regard it as a priority.
At present the police have to request the approval of a parliamentary majority to waive MPs of their immunity in criminal investigations, but this should change mid-year once the government is settled in and the draft legislation drawn up. In February parliament unanimously approved the cancellation at least of immunity for misdemeanours in a symbolic pre-election gesture.
Outgoing interior minister Daniel Lipsic from KDH pointed out that it has been a priority for his party since 2003, adding how he at least appreciated how Smer-SD had changed its mind after nine years. Fico’s proposal would most likely still require the police to get parliamentary approval to apprehend or imprison an MP, though.
El Fico once again demonstrates his total contempt for the rule of law and the Slovak people. We’ll get rid of immunity for politicians but you can’t arrest one of us unless the rest of us agree. He has an overall majority, so even if one of his merry men is caught with a smoking gun or their hands in the till the police can’t act without a majority vote in parliament. The bottom line of this brain wave is – if a SMER MP breaks the law the nodding dogs will save his/her arse, anyone else crosses the law – lock em up!
“No man is above the law” No immunity for anyone, under any circumstances, and a police service who’s hands aren’t tied by politicians is what the people want.
A joke proposal from the biggest clown in Slovakia!!