Disagreement and concern: the fight between Justice and Congress continues in Peru | news today
Congress of Peru during the debates for the possible advancement of the general elections.
Photo: EFE – Congress of Peru
The Judiciary of Peru expressed its “disagreement and concern” over the ruling issued last February by the Constitutional Court (TC) in a dispute with Congress, which determined that there are powers that are “unique and exclusive” of the legislative function, reported an official statement on Wednesday.
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The Plenary Chamber of the Supreme Court, the highest deliberative body of the Peruvian Judiciary, stated in a statement that the Constitutional Court “not only annulled decisions handed down by three courts of first instance in separate amparo proceedings in process, but also denounced the functional conduct of the judges who issued them”.
It considered a “grave fact in itself” that “the determination of possible disciplinary responsibilities” against the judges has been requested and that Congress has also been urged “to open the possibility of processing constitutional accusations against the members of the electoral bodies”.
This implies, he emphasized, a “serious risk of blocking their autonomy and subjecting them to political control that, with good arguments, was not authorized” by the Peruvian Constitution.
“A derived principle, minimal in these cases, is that the judicial opinions embodied in a decision issued within the framework of their legitimate powers cannot be subject to disciplinary censorship,” he said.
He also recalled that the exercise of the jurisdictional power of judges “without interference, limitation or conditions” cannot be “interfered with by jurisdictional claims”, even more so “when it comes to controlling the activity of other public powers”.
“The Judiciary, consequently, cannot agree with the reasons given by the aforementioned sentence of the Constitutional Court. Rather, it expresses its concern about the legal conception that it assumes and highlights the serious effects that it can have for the protection of the fundamental rights of citizens and judicial independence”, concluded the Plenary Chamber.
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THE RESOLUTION OF THE TC
On February 23, the Constitutional Court resolved in favor of Congress a contest of powers that it presented against the Judiciary on issues that it considers “unique and exclusive” of the Legislative function, including the election of the ombudsman.
In this sense, he ordered the annulment of the judicial resolutions that prevented the appointment of the defender and the carrying out of parliamentary investigations “on matters of public interest”, as well as reforming the board of directors of the superintendency of higher education Sunedu.
The Constitutional Court also decided to inform the National Board of Justice (JNJ) so that it “proceeds in accordance with its powers regarding the functional behavior of judges who have granted protections and precautionary measures over the exclusive political powers” of the Legislature.
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He also urged Congress to amend article 99 of the Constitution, as well as its internal regulations, to incorporate the members of the National Elections Jury (JNE), the head of the National Office of Electoral Processes (ONPE) and the head of the Registry National Identification and Civil Status (Reniec).
That constitutional article establishes that it corresponds to the Permanent Commission to accuse before Congress the president, ministers, legislators, judges and other high officials “for any crime they commit in the exercise of their functions and up to five years after they have ceased in these” .
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