Hary Pahaniaila sues Lidziya Yarmoshyna
The Maskouski District Court of Minsk turned down the lawsuit of the well-known Belarusian lawyer Hary Pahaniaila against Lidziya Yarmoshyna. Mr. Pahaniaila, the Chairperson of the legal commission of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee, asked the court to declare unlawful the actions of the Chairperson of the Central Election Commission Lidziya Yarmoshyna and oblige her to consider his complaint to the CEC not individually, but collegially, in cooperation with other members of the CEC, as it is demanded by the Belarusian laws.
In the complaint (that had been filed to the CEC on 20 September) Hary Pahaniaila proposed the CEC members not to register the electoral team of Aliaksandr Lukashenka and presented a detailed list of the legal grounds on which Lukashenka had no right to run for the fourth presidential term.
In his lawsuit to the Maskouski District Court of Minsk the lawyer emphasized that according to provisions of Article 33, part 2 of the Electoral Code, the CEC was to have considered the complaint collegially. ‘However, this issue wasn’t put on the CEC agenda, which is a violation of the existing rules’, argues Mr. Pahaniaila in his lawsuit. ‘As it can be seen from the post marks, my complaint was submitted on 20 September, and the answer is dated 21 September, whereas the electoral team of Aliaksandr Lukashenka was registered on 27 September. In particular, Hary Pahaniaila refers to Article 32-1, part 4 of the Electoral Code, according to which his complaint was to have been considered collegially.
Having received a negative answer from the judge of the Maskouski District Court Husakova, Hary Pahaniaila submitted to the court a private remark about the actions of the court. Moreover, other BHC lawyers who had also addressed the CEC with similar applications and received analogical answers, applied to court as well.
Being asked about the chances to receive a positive answer from the court, the lawyer answered: ‘Actually, there are no chances, as there are no real courts for us. However, being lawyers we must use the legal mechanisms to protect the Constitution. Trying to retain the power in a non-constitutional way Lukashenka committed a constitutional overturn and our liberal Constitution was turned upside down,’ commented the lawyer.
Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections