Leaders of Hungary’s judiciary system protested in a statement issued on Thursday against the governing parties’ plan to reduce the mandatory retirement age for judges from 70 to 62 years in the new constitution.
The statement, addressed to the public of Hungary and the European Union, calls the proposal “irresponsible, ill-considered, and professionally unjustified.” It has been signed by heads of the Supreme Court, Hungary’s five courts of appeals, and 15 county courts.
The document said that the proposal was discriminative, and it violated international standards and regulations concerning the independence and legal status of judges.
If parliament passes the proposal as part of the new constitution, 274 judges will have to retire before the end of next year, and new judges will need to be appointed in approximately 40,000 cases causing considerable delays in court procedures, the document said.
According to signatories of the statement, the proposal was politically motivated, and the purpose of codifying the retirement age of judges in the constitution was to save the stipulation from a possible veto by the Constitutional Court.