Fico to Withdraw His Counstitutional Court Candidacy

Smer-SD leader Robert Fico (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, February 12 (TASR) – Ex-premier and head of Smer-SD Robert Fico declared on Tuesday in front of the media that he will withdraw his candidacy to become a Constitutional Court judge.

“It’s not possible to sit behind one table with a party that prefers its own partisan interests over the common responsibility for the country,” stated Fico. “If candidates for Constitutional Court judges are elected in Parliament as a result of Most-Hid voting with the Opposition, the coalition agreement will be violated with serious consequences for the functioning of the Government,” he stressed.
With regard to his candidacy Fico stated that his ambition was the post of chairman of the Constitutional Court, not the post of a regular Constitutional Court judge. He considers himself a legitimate candidate who’s met all legal requirements. Fico doubts the system of the vote, not only in the case of a public vote, but also the impartiality of President Andrej Kiska who is supposed to appoint nine new judges from the candidates that will be presented to him by Parliament. Fico is implying Kiska’s ambitions to stay active in politics even after his presidential mandate ends. Therefore Fico thinks that Kiska’s successor should be the one to appoint new Constitutional Court judges.
“In order to actively participate in further negotiations as the chairman of the strongest political party, to not raise suspicions that I assimilate them to my personal interests, I’ve decided that I won’t be running as a candidate,” stated Fico.
Fico added that if Tuesday’s or possibly Thursday’s election of candidates doesn’t end in electing the necessary number of candidates and there will be a threat that the Constitutional Court might be paralysed, there’s enough tools to secure the court’s proper functioning, for example, by prolonging the mandates of current judges whose mandates end in a few days.
The election of candidates will take place on Tuesday at 5 p.m. Chair of Parliament Andrej Danko (Slovak National Party/SNS) signalled that a possible repeated vote would take place on Thursday (January 14).