Opinion: Judges appointed, ECJ bypassed

Polish President Andrzej Duda by appointing Supreme Court judges has acted in advance of any ECJ decisions and in spite of Polish Supreme Court (SN) and Supreme Administrative Court (NSA) attempts at suspending the appointments.

Polish president appoints new judges to Supreme Court

Polish President Andrzej Duda has appointed 27 new judges to three chambers of the Supreme Court (SN), Paweł Mucha, the presidential aide has said.

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This is another act in the unfolding judicial reform saga in Poland. The President has acted decisively in favour of the personnel changes in the Supreme Court taking place, despite the EC’s decision to refer Poland’s Supreme Court legislation to the ECJ and the rulings by the SN and NSA attempting to suspend the appointments.

The decision means that the personnel changes have taken place before the ECJ can rule to suspend the legislation taking effect. That suspension will now be relatively ineffective.

Too much political capital has been invested in the reform efforts to rid the Supreme Court of judges who had, in some cases, served in communist times and presided in cases of sentencing Solidarity activists during the period of martial law.

The confrontation with sections of the Polish judiciary, the domestic opposition and the EC will not end anytime soon.