Top court chair urges local courts to comply with Constitutional Court’s rulings
Administrative and judicial authorities should comply with the verdicts of the Constitutional Court, the top court’s chair said on Feb. 9, while emphasizing that ignoring Constitutional Court’s decisions may cause the constitution to become dysfunctional.
“Failure to implement the decisions of the Constitutional Court may render the constitution completely meaningless and dysfunctional,” Constitutional Court Chair Zühtü Arslan said, speaking at the oath-taking ceremony of the new member of Constitutional Court, İrfan Fidan.
“Where the constitution becomes meaningless and the trust of individuals and society in law and the state is shaken, no opportunity to protect the values that hold us together is left,” he added.
According to the constitution and the relevant law, administrative and judicial authorities are obliged to implement the judgments of the Constitutional Court, Arslan said.
“The binding nature of the decisions of the Constitutional Court and the obligation to implement them is also a guarantee of the protection of constitutional rights and freedoms,” he stated.
His comments came amid a debate on a local court’s hesitation to comply with the Constitutional Court’s verdicts. On Jan. 21, Turkey’s Constitutional Court ruled – for the second time – that the rights of former opposition lawmaker Enis Berberoğlu, who lost his parliamentary immunity and his seat in parliament due to an ongoing court case against him, were breached. The top court’s ruling came over a local court that did not comply with its initial verdict.
But on Feb. 8, Istanbul’s 14th Heavy Panel Court ruled to end the conviction of Berberoğlu, who was sentenced on terror-related charges, and to start his retrial after the Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office advised it to abide by the top court’s rulings in 2020 and early 2021.