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【宣誓覆核】不干預原則成梁游上訴案關鍵 三主審法官五年前贊成不干預|廣雅仁

2016-11-24 23:36
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青年新政梁頌恆及游蕙禎就上周高等法院原訟庭裁定兩人宣誓無效的上訴案,今日於上訴庭開審。案件由高院首席法官張舉能、上訴庭副庭長林文瀚及上訴法官潘兆初審理。

該司法覆核案件在原訟庭初審時,梁、游一方用「不干預原則」作為反對理據,指出議員宣誓是立法會內部事務,法院不應該干預立法會運作。然而,原訟庭法官歐慶祥就不接納,並在判詞中指出,「不干預原則」源自英國的三權分立,英國實行「國會之上」,並無明文憲法,但香港有成文的《基本法》,地位高於立法會。又引用2012年「梁國雄剪布案」的例子,指出在香港應用不干預原則時,在處理何事可視為立法會的「內部事務」時,必須符合《基本法》相關的憲制規定。

但區慶祥法官的判決,就被部分法律界人士質疑沒有說服力,以及未有解釋清楚立法會「內部事務」的具體內容。

今次上訴案件開審之後,「不干預原則」再次成為爭議重點。梁游一方的代表律師首先陳詞時就再次強調,宣誓屬於立法會內部事務,作為立法會監誓人的立法會主席或秘書長,才有權裁定議員是否拒絕或忽略宣誓,但在今次案件中,監誓人並沒作出取消兩人資格的決定,在不干預原則下,法院不應該介入。

關於「不干預原則」,2012年梁國雄就時任立法會主席曾鈺成,在會議討論遞補機制時「剪布」提出的司法覆核案,原訟庭及上訴庭在審理時亦有多次提及。梁國雄的司法覆核在原訟庭被駁回,上訴亦被判敗訴。而當時審裡該案件的原訟庭法官為林文翰,上訴庭的三位主審法官當中亦包括張舉能及潘兆初。

我們不妨從「梁國雄剪布案」中,三位法官的判詞,看看三人對不干預原則的說法。

首先,在原訟庭駁回梁國雄司法覆核的判詞中,林文瀚在多段都提及過不干預原則。其中他在 31段提到,一般來說,只有在非常特別的情況下,法庭才可介入去判定是否適合干預立法會程序【1】。 32段又提到,《基本法》賦予立法會進行立法的憲制責任,法庭必須要尊重立法程序的自主性,即使法庭只是輕微介入,也會對立法會的正常運作造成極大破壞【註2】。判詞第49段又提到,因為議會特權原則在《基本法》中並無從憲制上被置換,故法庭認為不干預原則適用於本案【註3】。

案件在上訴庭審理之後,張舉能法官在判詞中也提到,在《基本法》的規定下,法庭有權過問立法會的內部事務,其中一個介入的方法便是《基本法》賦予法庭一定的職責,可在立法會在立法過程中涉及違法程序時,對其進行審查【註4】。不過,判詞又指,雖然法庭有審查立法機關的權力,但如何使用該權力又是另外一個問題,法庭應該盡可能地避免介入立法機關的立法過程。

對於梁國雄的剪布上訴案,張舉能指出,案情是關於立法機關並未遵守其議事規則,《基本法》並沒有賦予法庭任何權力去介入類似事件,作為在《基本法》憲制框架下成立的立法機關,立法會有足夠的能力將有關案件在內部通過討論解決,任何法庭介入都是不必要及不被批准的【註5】。

張舉能的判詞又提到,法庭的不干預原則,針對的是立法會內部事務,並非針對立法會主席或任何一位人士【註6】。

潘兆初在判詞中就表示認同張舉能的判決,並指梁國雄在立法會的拉布策略被立法會主席中斷後,就立即尋求法庭協助,希望法庭介入立法會運作,但在此事中,法庭是完全無理據去無視議會特權而直接介入立法會內部事務【註7】。

1】: In general, there must be very exceptional circumstances before the court can deem it appropriate to intervene in the legislative process.

註2】:the court must respect the integrity of the legislative process. If the court were to intervene lightly, this would cause great damage and disruption to the proper functioning of the Legislative Council, to whom the constitutional role of a legislature is assigned under the Basic Law.

註3】:Since it is my conclusion that there is no constitutional displacement of the principle of parliamentary privilege in the Basic Law, I agree with Mr Yu that the court should observe the non-intervention approach both before and after the completion of the legislative process.

註4】:All this means that in the local context, the courts are empowered and indeed required to inquire into the internal workings of the Legislative Council if and when, but only to the extent that, the Basic Law so requires. It is, in other words, all a matter of interpretation of the Basic Law and of the true intention behind its relevant provisions.One possible area of intervention is where the Basic Law places upon the courts some duty of scrutinizing legislative proceedings for alleged breaches of constitutional requirements.

註5】:In other words, the Basic Law does not require or empower any court intervention in the case of the legislature’s non-compliance with its own rules of procedure for the time being when making laws…The legislature, under the constitutional framework laid down in the Basic law, is fully capable of putting its own house in order in the type of situation under discussion. Any court intervention is neither necessary nor warranted.

註6】:Whatever privilege there may be under common law attaches only to the legislature, not the President. The court’s non‑intervention is directed at the internal workings of the Legislative Council, but not the acts or inaction of the President.

註7】:When the filibustering tactics that the applicant and his political allies in the Legislative Council deployed against the Bill failed because the President ended the debate, he rushed to court to seek the court’s immediate intervention in the legislative process. But, as explained by Lam J and the Chief Judge, on the facts of this case, there was simply no basis whatsoever for the court to disregard the parliamentary privilege and intervene in the internal workings of the Legislative Council.

(撰文:廣雅仁)(圖片來源:蘋果日報)

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