Armenian justice ex-minister Arpine Hovhannisyan commented on the recent developments over constitutional amendments.
According to her, the bill of constitutional amendments must be assessed by the Constitutional Court.
According to her, the Constitutional Court determines the compliance with the Constitution prior to the adoption of draft constitutional amendments and legal acts of a referendum, as provided for by the law on the Constitutional Court.
She noted that according to other article of the constitution, if the National Assembly does not adopt the draft constitutional amendments, it can be put to a referendum by decision of at least 3/5 of the total number of deputies.
“It doesn’t matter at what stage, in the first reading, in the second reading or a few seconds before the Armenian president Armen Sarkissian signs it, the draft law MUST BE ASSESSED by the CC,” she wrote on her Facebook. “It can be argued that the Constitutional Court cannot consider the issue of terminating the powers of its judges, and the answer to this statement is as follows: read the position of the Venice Commission on the part of Armenia.”
“This must be stopped. The issue of international authority and legal security of Armenia is at stake,” she concluded.
As reported earlier, Armenian parliament should have discussed Thursday two controversial bills over the Constitutional Court. However, the author of the bills, My Step ruling bloc MP, Vahagn Hovakimyan has recalled them amid some technical reasons.
The bill had stipulated that amendments to the Constitution could be made without obtaining the respective CC conclusion. According to Hovakimyan, My Step faction won’t adopt the bill in the first reading, but will propose to hold a referendum for the bill. This is exactly what direct democracy is all about, he said.
The only draft included in the current special session proposes a draft on constitutional amendment, which provides for the suspension of the powers of CC members, elected before April 2018.