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Legislative Proposal would Curb Presidential Power

The government is set to bring its proposal for reform of readiness legislation to Parliament in January. Representatives of government groups decided on the matter on Thursday, and the Ministry of Justice published its timetable on the matter in the morning. The bill would expand official powers in exceptional situations, such as an armed threat, a massive accident, or outbreak of a communicable disease.

The reform would bring preparedness legislation into line with the constitution. Parliament's Constitutional Law Committee has urged legislative reform already twice.

The changes would mean that the implementation of the authority provided for by the measures would be set by the government and not the President, as is the case in the present law.

Jarmo Viinanen, the Chief of Staff of the President of the Republic, criticises the reduction of Presidential powers that the bill contains. Viinanen feels that the government is restricting the possibilities of the President to serve as leader of foreign policy and commander-in-chief of the Defence Forces.

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