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President signs bill scrapping disputed disciplinary chamber for judges

Andrzej Duda, the Polish president, on Monday, signed into law a bill that strikes down a disciplinary chamber for judges.
Leszek Szymański/PAP

Andrzej Duda, the Polish president, on Monday, signed into law a bill that strikes down a disciplinary chamber for judges, a necessary step for Poland to receive over EUR 35 billion in post-pandemic recovery funds from the European Union.

The announcement was made by Pawel Szrot, who heads Duda’s office. He told PAP that the law had now been sent for publication in the Journal of Laws.

On June 1, the European Commission approved Poland’s national post-pandemic recovery plan (KPO) and now the country stands to receive EUR 35.4 billion from the EU’s Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF).

However, the release of the money has been conditioned on the dissolution of the disciplinary panel for judges at Poland’s Supreme Court and reforming the disciplinary procedure for judges.

The bill, which had been submitted to parliament by Duda, envisages setting up a new body at the Supreme Court called the Chamber of Professional Responsibility, whose 11 judges would be appointed by the president.

In a vote on Thursday, Poland’s Sejm, the lower house of parliament, finally approved the bill on the Supreme Court without 23 of 29 amendments recommended by the Senate.

The rejected amendments included the annulment of rulings issued by the Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court before it is liquidated and the requirement of at least seven years of adjudication in the Supreme Court for the judges to sit on the Chamber of Professional Responsibility. 


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