Two new Bills proposed by the Minister of Justice this week show that the Hungarian Government would use the war in Ukraine as a pretext to keep its excessive regulatory powers, while amending the constitution the 10th time.
On 3 May 2022, Hungary’s Minister of Justice submitted a Bill to the Parliament that would once again amend Hungary’s Fundamental Law: it would transform the constitutional system of special legal orders, and would authorise the Government to declare a “state of danger” in the case of an “armed conflict, war or humanitarian disaster in a neighbouring country”. This is accompanied by another Bill that would allow the Government to keep its excessive regulatory powers acquired first with a view to the pandemic, and would provide it with yet another carte blanche mandate to override Acts of Parliament via emergency decrees.
Our information note on the two draft Bills is available here:
Update 1: on 24 May 2022, the governing majority in the Hungarian Parliament adopted the 10th Amendment to the Fundamental Law and the accompanying legislation. The Government made use of the possibility to declare the new type of state of danger instantly, and, as of 25 May, it declared a state of danger due to the “armed conflict and humanitarian disaster in the territory of Ukraine, and in order to eliminate the consequences of these in Hungary”.
Update 2: on 8 June 2022, the Parliament adopted the Fourth Authorization Act, removing parliamentary oversight over individual emergency government decrees.