The Slovenian ex-prime minister accused Jourova of influencing the verdict of the Constitutional Court

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The amendment to the law, strongly opposed by Janš’s opposition Slovenian Democratic Party (SDS), was approved by the current left-liberal government with the declared aim of ensuring greater independence from political influences for public radio and television RTV Slovenija.

The Constitutional Court first suspended the amendment last year, but allowed it to enter into force after about three months. The leader of the conservative opposition, Janša, is convinced that this happened based on Jourová’s meeting with the President of the Constitutional Court, Matej Accett, last March. According to him, the European Commissioner for Values ​​and Transparency committed an impermissible political influence on Slovenian institutions, Janša said according to the Delo newspaper.

The Constitutional Court rejected the accusation. Both Accetto and Jourová already stated at the time of the visit that they did not discuss this case.

Photo: ČTK/AP

Former Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša

MEP Milan Zver, elected for SDS, said that the accusations made by his party leader were substantiated by the documents he requested from the commission and only received following the intervention of the European Ombudsman. According to him, the fact that part of the documents – including the one about the negotiations between Accetto and Jourová – was blacked out is suspicious. According to his words, he wants to obtain the full text by suing the EU court.

The EC spokeswoman repeated Jourová’s claim to the STA agency that she did not discuss RTV Slovenija with the President of the Constitutional Court during her visit to Slovenia. According to the EC, meetings with the highest representatives of the judiciary are part of the work of the commissioner, who is in charge of observing the principles of the rule of law in the countries of the Union.

Slovenian state television received the advice

In RTV Slovenija, on the basis of the amendment, a supervisory body was established, the composition of which was no longer influenced by the parliament, as well as a new board, which subsequently elected a new general manager. The change in the law was pushed through by the centre-left cabinet of Robert Golob, who took power in 2022. He did so on the basis of complaints from journalists and media organisations, according to which political interference in RTV Slovenija during Janš’s last government (2020 to 2022) damaged the credibility of the broadcast.

Janša, who is considered an ideological ally of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, claimed that the amendment was approved only to replace the management of the public station. His SDS also pushed for the law to be voted on in a referendum. However, 62 percent of Slovenians voted in favor of adopting the standard in November 2022.

During his last mandate at the head of the government, Janša repeatedly clashed with Jourova and the European Commission, which expressed concerns about media freedom and the rule of law in Slovenia.

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The article is in Czech

Tags: Slovenian exprime minister accused Jourova influencing verdict Constitutional Court

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