The Czech Constitutional Court has broadly backed the government’s right to put a brake on a solar power boom through retroactive taxes. It pointed out that though the blanket measure may have badly hit smaller investors counting on quick returns after taking out high interest loans the government had to have lee way to react to events.
The Constitutional Court should examine whether Czech freedoms and rights are endangered by the global anti-piracy agreement ACTA before the country takes any further steps to enact it , the Minister of Industry and Trade says.
The Czech government hailed the Cabinet deal paving the way for a proposal for nationwide referenda as a significant breakthrough. The fine details of the proposal and obstacles that any petition for a referenda will face before it can be put to the people and the thin chances of such a vote getting the required 50 percent participation puts a very different slant on the so-called move towards direct democracy.
Czech president Václav Klaus had responded to the upper house of parliament’s demand, and warning from some quarters that he might face impeachment action if he continued to delay, and signed the Additional Protocol to the European Social Charter. The social charter was approved by both houses in 2003 but the Czech head of state had held off signing it.
The upper house of the Czech Parliament, the Senate, has passed a motion demanding President Václav Klaus sign an additional protocol to the European Social Charter for submitting collective complaints, which was passed by both houses of parliament in 2003. The initiators of the motion say proceedings for his impeachment could be launched if he fails to act.
Putting your trust in the people is a good slogan for politicians seeking support, and this was the main argument wheeled out in the key Senate vote that pushed through direct Czech presidential elections for the first time. But there is a downside to the process, notably the increased risk of turf wars between the president and government, election of a non-democrat, and the fact Czechs will be left jaded by the process.
A bid to change the much criticized law protecting members of parliament from prosecution even after they have left office passed an important hurdle when it won sufficient support in the lower house on Wednesday. The move is seen as a decisive step to make legislators more answerable for their actions and has been supported by a sex strike campaign by a Czech civic group.
Communist prosecutor, Karel Vaš, who played a prominent role in the purge of the top brass of the Czechoslovak military in the late 1940’s, should have served a six-year sentence, Justice Minister Pospíšil has said in a complaint to the Supreme Court; according to Pospíšil, the High Court acted illegally by letting Vaš walk free on the grounds of statutes of limitations. In 2001, Vaš was sentenced to six years for the murder of General Heliodor Píka, who was sentenced to death and executed in 1949.
Legislation proposed by junior coalition member TOP 09 to compensate victims of the communist regime with money deducted from the pensions of former secret police (StB) agents and top communist party functionaries has been put on hold due to concerns that the legislation would be overturned by the Constitutional Court — and difficulties defining victims.
Telecoms operators will no longer have to store a mass of data about their users thanks to a ruling from the Constitutional Court. And neither police nor secret services will really be much poorer. All they have to do is put their requests in early. Miroslav Uřičař comments on the Alice in Wonderland world highlighted by the data retention law.