Senate approves prof. Marcin Wiącek as new human rights commissioner
Professor Marcin Wiącek has been appointed Poland's new Commissioner for Human Rights. His candidacy was approved on Wednesday by the upper house of parliament, the Senate. 98 senators took part in the vote, 93 were in favour of the candidate, no one was against, 5 abstained. His 5-year term will begin once he has taken the oath of office.
After months of attempts, Poland's parliament finally managed to approve a successor to current Commissioner for Human Rights Adam Bodnar. He will be replaced by professor Marcin Wiącek, who on Wednesday was approved by the upper house, the Senate.
In the vote, 93 out of 98 votes were in favour of the candidate, no one was against, and 5 senators abstained.
Lawyer and Warsaw University professor has already lost one bid to become commissioner. In the previous, fifth, attempt by the parliament to choose Bodnar's replacement, Wiącek was rejected by the lower house. His opponent backed by the ruling PiS party, senator Lidia Staroń, was approved by the Sejm, but later rejected by the upper house.
This time, Wiącek enjoyed support of all parliamentary clubs and was likely to be approved by both houses of parliament and become the new ombudsman.
After a ruling by the Constitutional Tribunal, saying the rule allowing the commissioner to remain in office until a successor is chosen was unconstitutional, Adam Bodnar had to leave office by July 15.
Professor Marcin Wiącek will begin his 5-year term once he has taken the oath of office.
"Disciplinary Chamber should suspend operations"
Professor Wiącek told reporters that he felt proud that the "agreement on the new RPO has been reached over his candidacy".
"I pledge, regardless of given circumstances, to help any citizen, person and human, who for any reason feels that their freedoms or rights are being violated," he added.
Wiącek was also asked about the relation between Polish and EU laws. "It seems that in terms of the relation between the EU and the constitutional law the state does not provide the best example to the citizens. For dialogue and agreement should first and foremost help to settle disputes, rather than launching court proceedings," said the new human rights commissioner.
One of the questions pertained to the future of the Supreme Court's Disciplinary Chamber. On July 15, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that the system of disciplining judges in Poland was at odds with the European Union law.
"In my opinion, urgent steps must be taken to execute the ruling of the Court of Justice of the European Union from July 15. Until this ruling has been executed, in order to safeguard legal security, the Disciplinary Chamber should suspend its operations," prof. Wiącek said.
Źródło: TVN24 News in English, PAP
Źródło zdjęcia głównego: PAP/Marcin Obara