Constitutional Court: Presidential Decree Appointing Kiril Petkov as Minister Violates the Constitution
The May 10th decree by which President Rumen Radev appointed Kiril Petkov as economy minister in the first caretaker government is unconstitutional.
This was ruled by the Constitutional Court with 11 votes, as Georgi Angelov signed the decision with a special opinion on the admissibility. The court is expected to announce its motives later in the day.
The reason is that on May 10, when Petkov became a minister, he had not only Bulgarian but also Canadian citizenship.
The partially unconstitutional decree of the president has a retroactive effect, which means that the attacked part is initially invalid as of the date of appointment and the dispute revolves around whether the acts issued by the minister are valid.
Shortly after the announcement of the decision of the constitutionalists, Kiril Petkov announced on Facebook that he accepted it and that when he signed his declaration of will to renounce citizenship on April 21, he handed over his Canadian passport, paid a fee and was sure that he fulfilled its obligation to the Constitution of Bulgaria.
Kiril Petkov himself twice asked the Constitutional Court to hear him - for the last time yesterday, but the court rejected the request.
Legal experts explained that this violates his right to defense, recognized by the Constitution itself. According to them, the allegation that a former minister and leader of a newly established political party is a violator of the Constitution seriously affects Petkov's public reputation, reputation and dignity, which are essential aspects of his right to privacy guaranteed by Article 32 of the Constitution and Article 8 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.
According to Art. 32 of the Constitution: "The private life of citizens is inviolable. Everyone has the right to protection against unlawful interference with his private and family life and against encroachment on his honor, dignity and reputation."
Kiril Petkov announced that he had given up his Canadian passport on April 21, but documents from the Ottawa authorities show that he lost his citizenship on August 20. The leader of "We Continue the Change" has repeatedly explained that it is enough to announce a refusal to abolish his dual citizenship. Prof. Ognyan Gerdjikov thinks the same, saying in an interview with OFFNews that this circumstance is enough.
Due to the Canadian citizenship, an investigation is underway against the former minister in the Specialized Prosecutor's Office. The reason was a signal from a citizen, submitted by e-mail with allegations of a crime committed by Petkov.
The story of Kiril Petkov's citizenship reached the Constitutional Court in August at the request of 55 GERB deputies to declare unconstitutional the decree by which Rumen Radev appoints Kiril Petkov as a minister. Their argument was that the economy minister was in conflict with the basic law because of his dual citizenship.
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