President Levits emphasised that ‘all public authorities and officials should carefully coordinate their steps and engage with each other; legal formalism and departmentalism can impede implementation of Satversme (Constitution), especially at times of crisis’. In case of emergency constitutional bodies, agencies, institutions and officials should be able to switch to appropriate work mode, including remote work, limited direct contact between people, more services shifted to digital platforms and other measures that allow government to ensure its core functions and tasks.
Heads of constitutional bodies agreed that crisis management is the task of Prime Minister of Latvia. Latvia’s democratic system presumes that other constitutional bodies act as a balancing force or counterweight, each of them protects the core of Satversme and acts and regulates its field to ensure that emergency is under control. Cabinet of Ministers is responsible for crisis management system, which ensures clear and uniform hands-on institutional response to crisis situations at the national level. Saeima should continue working on the legislation and exercising parliamentary scrutiny over the Cabinet of Ministers and conduct the parliamentary business in a remote mode, if necessary.
Heads of constitutional bodies also underlined that all residents have the duty to comply with emergency regulations and restrictions. Every citizen of Latvia should rigorously follow the emergency recommendations and instructions of government bodies and officials on how to handle the emergency and take care of at least yourself, your relatives and common good of the society, get involved and help overcome crisis.
This was the first joint meeting of the heads of constitutional bodies such as the President of Latvia, legislature, executive branch and judicial branch in the history of the Republic of Latvia. President of Latvia Egils Levits chaired the meeting between the Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš, Speaker of the Saeima Ināra Mūrniece, President of the Constitutional Court Ineta Ziemele and Chairman of the Supreme Court Ivars Bičkovičs.