Dabar populiaru
Published: 11 september 2012 10:16

Lithuanian election panel declines Rolandas Paksas candidacy for parliamentary election

Rolandas Paksas
Andriaus Ufarto/BFL nuotr. / Rolandas Paksas

Lithuania's Central Electoral Commission rejected the application of the leader of the Order and Justice party, MEP Rolandas Paksas, to run for parliament.

The bid to bar Paksas from the 14 October elections was supported by all members of the electoral body, with the exception of the Order and Justice party's representative, on Tuesday.

The refusal to register Paksas' candidacy is based on the recent Constitutional Court's ruling which suggests that the law that allowed Paksas to run for parliament comntradicted Lithuania's Constitution. Paksas was listed as the first candidate on the party's list for multi-mandate voting.

Representative of the Order and Justice party said that the line-up of candidates should not be changed in the wake of Tuesday's rejection, suggesting that the first place should be left empty.

Last week, the Constitutional Court ousted removed president Paksas from the upcoming election to the parliament by ruling that the law that allowed him register for the election contained violation of the Constitution. The court underscored the need to change the country's main law following the recent finding of the European Court of Human Rights, which said that a life-long ban from parliamentary elections was disproportional.

Two judges of the Constitutional Court stated separate opinions on the ruling, saying that Constitutional amendments were not necessary in this case.

Under an amendment to the law on parliamentary elections adopted by the parliament in spring, individuals removed from official posts through impeachment cannot run for parliament for four years following the impeachment. The earlier version envisaged a life-long ban.

The amendments to the law on Seimas elections were passed in response to the ECHR ruling, which said that a life-long ban from elected offices for politicians removed through impeachment was disproportional.

Paksas was removed from his presidential position in April 2004 after impeachment procedures over violation of the oath of office and gross violation of the Constitution by granting Lithuanian citizenship to his key campaign sponsor Yuri Borisov.

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