THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT OF                                    
                  THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA                                     
                                                                                
                                                                                
                           RULING                                               
                                                                                
 On the compliance of Article  9, 93, 96,10 and 101 of Part                     
II of the Statute of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania                    
     with the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania                         
                                                                                
                 24 February  1994, Vilnius                                     
                                                                                
      The Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania,                    
composed  from  the  Justices of  the  Constitutional  Court                    
Algirdas  Gailiūnas,  Kęstutis Lapinskas,  Zigmas  Levickis,                    
Vladas   Pavilonis,  Pranas  Vytautas  Rasimavičius,  Stasys                    
Stačiokas, Teodora Staugaitienė, Stasys Šedbaras and  Juozas                    
Žilys,                                                                          
     the secretary of the hearing - Rolanda Stimbirytė,                         
      the  petitioner - Zita Šličytė, representative of  the                    
group of Seimas members,                                                        
      the  party  concerned - Juozas Bernatonis, the  Seimas                    
representative, Deputy Chairman of the Seimas,                                  
      pursuant to Part 1, Article 102 of the Constitution of                    
the  Republic of Lithuania and Part 1, Article 1 of the  Law                    
on the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania, in                    
its  public  hearing  of  15  February  1994  conducted  the                    
investigation  of Case No 9/93 subsequent to  the  petitions                    
submitted  to  the  Court by a group of the  Seimas  of  the                    
Republic of Lithuania members requesting to investigate  the                    
compliance  of Articles 9, 93, 96,10 and 101 of Part  II  of                    
the  Statute of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania with                    
Articles  66  and 89 of the Constitution of the Republic  of                    
Lithuania.                                                                      
                                                                                
                                                                                
     The Constitutional Court                                                   
                         has established:                                       
     On 20 May 1993, the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania                    
adopted  Part  II  of  the  Statute  of  the  Seimas   named                    
"Structure  of the Seimas" (Parliamentary Record,  No  17  -                    
428,  1993). In the first part of Article 9 of this Part  it                    
is  established: "Sittings of the Seimas shall  be  presided                    
over  by the Chairperson of the Seimas or Deputy Chairperson                    
of  the Seimas. There shall be three Deputy Chairpersons  of                    
the  Seimas".  In the second part of Article 93  it  is  set                    
forth: "The Seimas Board shall consist of the Chairperson of                    
the Seimas, three Deputy Chairpersons and the Chancellor  of                    
the Seimas".                                                                    
     In Article 96 it is determined: "The Chairperson of the                    
Seimas  of  the Republic of Lithuania shall:  -  4)  propose                    
candidates  to  the  posts of Deputy  Chairpersons  and  the                    
Chancellor of the Seimas to the Seimas".                                        
      In  Article 10 it is stipulated: "At the behest of the                    
Chairperson of the Seimas, Deputy Chairpersons shall perform                    
certain  functions of the Chairperson. The Seimas Board  may                    
determine  the  guidelines of the activities of  the  Deputy                    
Chairpersons.                                                                   
      In  the  event that the Chairperson of the  Seimas  is                    
temporarily  absent or has fallen ill and by reason  thereof                    
is  unable  to fulfill his or her duties of office,  at  the                    
behest  of the Seimas, the duties of the Chairperson of  the                    
Seimas  shall be performed by one of the Deputy Chairpersons                    
for a specified period.                                                         
      If,  in  the  case  specified in  Article  89  of  the                    
Constitution,  the Chairperson of the Seimas is  temporarily                    
carrying  out  the duties of the President of the  Republic,                    
and  as the result thereof has lost his or her powers in the                    
Seimas, the duties of the Chairperson of the Seimas shall be                    
temporarily  carried  out  by a Deputy  Chairperson  at  the                    
behest of the Seimas.                                                           
      Resolutions  (preliminary or adopted for a  particular                    
case) concerning the temporary performance of the duties  of                    
the   Chairperson   of  the  Seimas  or   substituting   the                    
Chairperson of the Seimas shall be adopted by the Seimas  on                    
the motion of the Seimas Chairperson".                                          
      In the first and the second parts of Article 101 it is                    
specified:  "The  Chairperson of  the  Seimas,  or,  in  the                    
absence  of  the  Chairperson, the Deputy  Chairperson,  may                    
voice  his or her opinion or the opinion of the Seimas Board                    
on  the issues under consideration out of turn provided that                    
he or she is not presiding over the sitting.                                    
      During the session, the Chairperson of the Seimas, the                    
Deputy  Chairpersons and the Chancellor of the Seimas shall,                    
at  least  once  a  month, answer questions  concerning  the                    
performance  of  their duties submitted  beforehand  by  the                    
Seimas members".                                                                
      The  petitioner  -  a group of the  Seimas  members  -                    
request the Constitutional Court to recognize that  Articles                    
9, 93, 96,10 and 101 of Part II of the Statute of the Seimas                    
contradict Article 66 of the Constitution of the Republic of                    
Lithuania  specifying  that:  "The  Chairperson  or   Deputy                    
Chairperson of the Seimas shall preside over sittings of the                    
Seimas",   and  the  first  part  of  Article  89   of   the                    
Constitution  which  prescribes:  "In  the  event  that  the                    
President  dies, resigns or is removed from office according                    
to  impeachment proceedings, or if the Seimas resolves  that                    
the  President  of  the Republic is unable  to  fulfill  the                    
duties  of office for reasons of health, the duties  of  the                    
President  shall temporarily be passed over  to  the  Seimas                    
Chairperson. In  such a case, the Chairperson of the  Seimas                    
shall  lose  his  or her powers in the Seimas,  and  at  the                    
behest  of  the  Seimas,  the duties  of  Chairperson  shall                    
temporarily be carried out by the Deputy Chairperson".                          
     The petitioner bases his request on the fact that three                    
Deputy Chairpersons are stipulated in Article 9, 93, 96,  10                    
and  101 of Part II of the Seimas Statute, whereas, Articles                    
66  and  89 of the Constitution provide for only one  Deputy                    
Chairperson, therefore, the petitioner requests to recognize                    
that   the  provision  that  there  shall  be  three  Deputy                    
Chairpersons, of the Seimas, specified in Article 9, 93, 96,                    
10  and  101  of Part II of the Seimas Statute,  is  not  in                    
compliance   with  the  Constitution  of  the  Republic   of                    
Lithuania.                                                                      
      A  petitioner's representative explained in the  court                    
hearing  that,  conforming to Articles  66  and  89  of  the                    
Constitution  of the Republic of Lithuania, the  Chairperson                    
of  the Seimas and the Deputy Chairperson of the Seimas  are                    
two officials of the constitutional rank. In case prescribed                    
by  the  first part of Article 89 of the Constitution,  when                    
the Seimas Chairperson loses his or her powers in the Seimas                    
at  the behest of the Chairperson, the duties of Chairperson                    
shall temporarily be carried out by the Deputy Chairperson.                     
     During preliminary investigation of the case and in the                    
court  hearing,  a  representative of  the  party  concerned                    
explained that, in his opinion, Articles 9, 93, 96,  10  and                    
101  of  Part  II  of  the Statute  of  the  Seimas  do  not                    
contradict  the  Constitution and  submitted  the  following                    
arguments:                                                                      
      1. In the first part of Article 66 of the Constitution                    
the  procedure of  presiding over the sittings of the Seimas                    
is  established.  It  is stipulated  in  this  norm  of  the                    
Constitution,   which  two  officials  shall   alternatively                    
preside over sittings of the Seimas. Thus, there is no doubt                    
that  one  -  person  principle and not  collegiate  one  of                    
presiding  over  sittings  of the Seimas  is  prescribed  by                    
Article 66 of the Constitution. This Article does not define                    
the  number  of Deputy Chairmen of the Seimas but  specifies                    
who shall preside over sittings of the Seimas.                                  
      2.  The  statement of the petitioner's representative,                    
that  a  conclusion is to be drawn upon the  first  part  of                    
Article  89 of the Constitution that there may be  only  one                    
Deputy  Chairperson, is groundless.  In said Article of  the                    
Constitution  not  the  number  of  Deputy  Chairpersons  is                    
established but the regulation that, in the event  that  the                    
Chairperson  of the Seimas shall lose his or her  powers  in                    
the Seimas in case prescribed by this Article, at the behest                    
of  the  Seimas, the duties of Chairperson shall temporarily                    
be  carried out by the Deputy Chairperson. This means  that,                    
not  the number of Deputy Chairpersons is determined in said                    
Article of the Constitution but the powers of the Seimas are                    
restricted  in it, i.e. it is specified that the  duties  of                    
the Chairman of the Seimas may temporarily be delegated only                    
to  the  Deputy  Chairperson of the Seimas and  not  to  any                    
Seimas member.                                                                  
      3.  The  statement of the petitioner's  representative                    
that  there must be only one Deputy Chairman of the  Seimas,                    
contradicts the logical meaning of the first part of Article                    
89  of  the  Constitution,  as it  is  established  in  this                    
Article,  that, at the behest of the Seimas, the  duties  of                    
Chairperson  shall temporally be carried out by  the  Deputy                    
Chairperson. Such authorisation is necessary only  in  cases                    
when  there are more than one Deputy Chairmen. If  only  one                    
Deputy Chairperson were elected, the Seimas, upon his or her                    
election,   would  resolve  the  issue  who  in   case   the                    
Chairperson  of the Seimas loses his or her  powers  in  the                    
Seimas,  must temporarily perform his or her duties  as  the                    
Constitution does not provide for another alternative.                          
     4. The Structure of the Seimas is not determined in the                    
Constitution  -  neither the Seimas Board, nor  Assembly  of                    
Spokesmen, nor Committees, nor Commissions, nor factions are                    
stipulated  in  it.  This does not mean, however,  that  the                    
formation  of  said  structural derivatives  contradict  the                    
Constitution.  In  Article  76 of  the  Constitution  it  is                    
emphasized:  "The structure and procedure of  activities  of                    
the  Seimas  shall  be  determined by  the  Statute  of  the                    
Seimas". This means, that the Constitution has entitled  the                    
Seimas  to the prerogative to establish such inner structure                    
and   procedure   of  activities  that  would   ensure   the                    
possibility  to  implement  the  powers  prescribed  in  the                    
Constitution and provide every Seimas member with conditions                    
to exercise the powers of the People's representative.                          
       The   representative  of  the  party  concerned   has                    
maintained that Articles  9, 93, 96,10 and 101 of Part II of                    
the  Seimas Statute do not contradict the Constitution  also                    
according to the extent of regulation and form.                                 
                                                                                
     The Constitutional Court                                                   
                    holds that:                                                 
                                                                                
     In Article 4 of the Constitution it is  prescribed that                    
the People shall exercise the supreme sovereign power vested                    
in  them  either  directly or through  their  democratically                    
elected representatives, and in the first part of Article  5                    
it  is  specified: "In Lithuania, the powers  of  the  State                    
shall  be  exercised  by the Seimas, the  President  of  the                    
Republic  and Government, and the Judiciary". The  procedure                    
of  forming these institutions of power, the term of office,                    
competence and democratic principles of their activities are                    
determined in the Constitution.                                                 
      The  Seimas  as  an  institution of legislation  while                    
implementing  its  powers is independent within  the  limits                    
prescribed  by the Constitution, but it always  must  ensure                    
permanent  implementation of its powers  stipulated  in  the                    
Constitution.                                                                   
      In  Chapter 5 of the Constitution titled "The  Seimas"                    
the  Seimas  composition and the procedure of its elections,                    
the term of office, rights and duties of the Seimas members,                    
the  Seimas competence, the main procedures of law enactment                    
as   well  as  other  prerogatives  of  the  Seimas  as   an                    
institution of legislation are established.                                     
     The main provisions of legal status of state powers are                    
set  forth  in  the  Constitution, however,  the  issues  of                    
organizing  their internal activities as well as some  other                    
issues  concerning their functioning are not resolved there,                    
therefore  a legislator shall adopt laws by which the  legal                    
status   of   institutions  of  power  is   given   concrete                    
expression. Law on the President of the Republic, Law on the                    
Government, Law on the Constitutional Court, Law on  Courts,                    
also  the Statute of the Seimas, which has the power of law,                    
are of aforementioned kind.                                                     
      The Constitution does not contain the norms regulating                    
the   structure  of  the  Seimas.  In  Chapter  5   of   the                    
Constitution under the title "The Seimas" even the procedure                    
of   the   election  of  the  Seimas  Chairperson   is   not                    
established, though other powers, along with presiding  over                    
the  sittings, are vested in him (Articles 70, 71, 89,  103,                    
140 and 149 of the Constitution).                                               
     In Article 76 of the Constitution it is prescribed that                    
the  structure  and procedure of activities  of  the  Seimas                    
shall be determined by the Statute of the Seimas. Thus,  the                    
Seimas  is  entitled  to  the right  to  establish  its  own                    
structure and procedure of activities.                                          
      The  structure of the Seimas is a system of inner sub-                    
units  established in the Statute of the Seimas, which  must                    
ensure  working  capacity and effective functioning  of  the                    
parliament,  i.e.  must  provide the Seimas  with  necessary                    
conditions and prerequisites for permanent implementation of                    
its  functions prescribed by the Constitution. The governing                    
body  of  the  Seimas is the most significant  part  in  the                    
system  of  structural  units  as  only  its  functions  are                    
determined in the Constitution.                                                 
      In  the Constitution it is set forth that sittings are                    
the main form of the Seimas activities. In the first part of                    
Article  66  of the Constitution it is stipulated  that  the                    
Chairperson   or  Deputy Chairperson  of  the  Seimas  shall                    
preside  over  sittings  of the Seimas.  Although  only  two                    
duties  of  office of the governing body of the  Seimas  are                    
mentioned in said Article, the contents of this norm has the                    
meaning  of  organizational function, because  said  Article                    
only  specifies  who  shall preside  over  sittings  of  the                    
Seimas,  therefore,  the conclusion that, issues  concerning                    
the  structure  shall be regulated by this  norm,  i.e.  the                    
number  of Deputy Chairmen shall be established, may not  be                    
drawn.                                                                          
      Conforming to the Constitution, the Chairperson of the                    
Seimas  is  an  official of the Seimas in  whom  independent                    
constitutional powers are vested, and Deputy Chairperson  of                    
the Seimas, in accordance with the first part of  Article 66                    
of  the  Constitution, may perform only one  function,  i.e.                    
preside  over  sittings  of the Seimas.  The  constitutional                    
powers  of the Chairperson of the Seimas shall be passed  to                    
the  Deputy  Chairperson  of the Seimas  only  in  the  case                    
prescribed by Article 89 of the Constitution, i.e. when  he,                    
at  the  behest of the Seimas, shall temporarily perform the                    
duties of the Chairperson of the Seimas.                                        
      The  interpretation that, in compliance with the first                    
part  of Article 89 of the Constitution, there must be  only                    
one  Deputy Chairperson of the Seimas, is groundless. In the                    
first  part  of  Article  89  of  the  Constitution  it   is                    
established  that, in case when the duties of the  President                    
of  the Republic shall be temporarily passed over go to  the                    
Chairperson of the Seimas, the latter shall lose his or  her                    
powers  in the Seimas, and at the behest of the Seimas,  the                    
duties  of the Chairperson shall temporarily be carried  out                    
by  the  Deputy  Chairperson. This constitutional  provision                    
establishes  not the number of Deputy Chairpersons  but  the                    
Seimas   prerogative  at  its  behest  to   constitute   the                    
delegation  of  the powers of Chairperson of the  Seimas  to                    
another  person  -  Deputy Chairperson of the  Seimas.  This                    
means,  that  nobody else except the Seimas may  change  the                    
status  of  the  Deputy Chairperson of the Seimas,  i.e.  to                    
entitle  him  to the right since concrete date for  definite                    
term  to  temporarily perform constitutional powers  of  the                    
Seimas  Chairperson.  Such  procedure  of  constituting   is                    
grounded on the Seimas' absolute right to resolve the issues                    
concerning  its  inner  structure  and  formation   of   its                    
governing  body. The Seimas itself in its Statute determines                    
the procedure of resolving said issues.                                         
      Taking  the  constitutional status of  the  Seimas  as                    
legislative  authority  into consideration,  there  must  be                    
created   such   structure  and  democratic   procedure   of                    
activities  of  the  Seimas that would enable  the  People's                    
representative    to   constructively,    effectively    and                    
permanently  implement the supreme sovereign power  of   the                    
People.  Thus,  the  explanation, that  the  first  part  of                    
Article 66 of the Constitution provides for  only one Deputy                    
Chairperson of the Seimas, is also groundless. When in cases                    
prescribed  by  the  first  part  of  Article  89   of   the                    
Constitution, the Deputy Chairperson temporarily acting  for                    
the  Chairperson  of the Seimas falls ill or  is  unable  to                    
fulfill  the duties of office for other reasons, this  might                    
cause  disorder  in the activities of the  Seimas  as  there                    
would be no official being capable of legally performing the                    
constitutional  function - presiding over  sittings  of  the                    
Seimas.  In  said  event,  elections  of  temporary   Deputy                    
Chairperson  would become problematic, i.e. as a  matter  of                    
fact, the activities of the Seimas would be disturbed.                          
      Neither Article 66 nor Article 89 restrict the  Seimas                    
in establishing the number of the Deputy Chairpersons of the                    
Seimas.  The Seimas, in accordance with  Article 76  of  the                    
Constitution having established three Deputy Chairpersons in                    
Article  9 and 93  of Part II of the Statute of the  Seimas,                    
and having used the notion "Deputy Chairperson"  in Articles                    
96,10  and 101, only implemented the right to determine  the                    
structure and procedure of activities of the Seimas,  vested                    
in him by the Constitution.                                                     
      Conforming to Article 102 of the Constitution  of  the                    
Republic of Lithuania as well as Articles 53, 54, 55 and  56                    
of  the  Law on the Constitutional Court of the Republic  of                    
Lithuania,  the  Constitutional Court  of  the  Republic  of                    
Lithuania has taken the following                                               
                          ruling :                                              
                                                                                
     To recognize that Article  9, 93, 96,10 and 101 of Part                    
II  of  the Statute of the Seimas  are consistent  with  the                    
Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania.                                      
                                                                                
      This  Constitutional Court ruling  is  final  and  not                    
subject to appeal.                                                              
      The ruling is promulgated on behalf of the Republic of                    
Lithuania.                                                                      
                                                                                
     Justices of the Constitutional Court:                                      
                                                                                
                                                                                
Algirdas       Gailiūnas            Kęstutis       Lapinskas                    
Zigmas Levickis                                                                 
                                                                                
                                                                                
                                                                                
                                                                                
Vladas   Pavilonis           Pranas  Vytautas   Rasimavičius                    
Stasys Stačiokas                                                                
                                                                                
                                                                                
                                                                                
                                                                                
Teodora        Staugaitienė           Stasys        Šedbaras                    
Juozas Žilys