President Kiska Turns to Constitutional Court on State Awards Controversy

President Andrej Kiska giving a speech in the Parliament (stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, January 19 (TASR) – President Andrej Kiska wants the Act on State Awards to be looked into by the Constitutional Court, TASR learnt on Friday.

Kiska pointed out that under the Slovak Constitution, the President represents the only constitutional body with an authority to bestow awards, provided that he doesn’t entrust the task to another body. “It follows from this exclusive power wielded by the head of state that it’s not possible for any other constitutional body of the Slovak Republic to bestow awards,” said Henrieta Hajtova of the President’s Office press department, adding that Andrej Kiska hasn’t delegated the powers to any other body.

The Parliament recently greenlighted a legislation that created Jozef Miloslav Hurban State Award and Alexander Dubcek State Award, to be bestowed by the Government and Parliamentary Chair. President Kiska rejected the bill, but the Parliament overrode his veto. “By approving the State Award Act, the Parliament disrupted the exclusive constitutional powers of the President and thus undermined his standing with respect to granting awards… despite the fact that the Constitution expects the awards to be bestowed exclusively by the President, provided that he or she doesn’t delegate the authority to other body,” concluded Hajtova.

The latest developments arise from disagreements between the Government and President Kiska on some laureates decorated with state awards by Kiska.