SDS says government already trampled on constitution

Ljubljana – Opposition SDS MP Branko Grims has accused the Robert Golob government of trampling on the constitution as soon as it came to power; he cited its demand to compile lists of staff that were hired during the previous two governments and the interior minister’s withdrawal of consent for the suits regarding anti-government rallies.

In a statement to the press on Tuesday, Grims said that these were “illegal and unconstitutional moves”.

At its first session, the new government decided to take a look at all employments between 1 January 2020 and 31 May 2022 in the state administration – at the end of the Marjan Šarec government and during the entire term of the Janez Janša government.

Grims said such checks ignored the fact that collecting and processing any data “to carry out political purges among employees is clearly unconstitutional”.

He stressed that the constitution gives everyone equal rights regardless of their political beliefs. “And ‘Berufsverbot’ is a hallmark of totalitarianism.”

Grims also criticised the Interior Ministry’s withdrawal of consent for damages suits brought against individuals over the costs of policing of the unregistered anti-government protests held in Ljubljana over the past two years.

He believes that by doing so, Minister Tatjana Bobnar took even a step further in trampling on the constitution and the rule of law than the government.

The law on public assembly is “crystal clear” that if the police incur special costs, the organiser has to cover them, and the law also defines who the organiser is, Grims said.

“Do you know what she really did? She arbitrarily, obviously illegally, even unlawfully, obviously unconstitutionally, put EUR 882,650 on the shoulders of taxpayers.”

He said the sum was an accurate police calculation of the costs incurred by the police in protecting and maintaining law and order at these rallies.

Three decisions for Jaša Jenull, one of the most outspoken protestors, to pay EUR 40,000 have already been issued but Bobnar has now revoked that too, Grims said.

The MP said that the interior minister does not have such discretion under the law.

He said Bobnar had reversed a decision of the previous government, whereby Slovenia is no longer a country governed by the rule of law or where everyone is equal before the law.

Grims thus called on Bobnar to reconsider her decision and to respect the constitution and the rule of law.

He said he was “firmly convinced” that none of those who had voted for Robert Golob in the April election wanted to live in a country where laws do not apply.