Currently, the law indicates that “deputies cannot be heard as deponents or defendants without authorisation from the Assembly, and the authorisation decision is mandatory, in the second case, when there are strong indications of the practice of an intentional crime that corresponds to a prison sentence whose maximum limit is greater than 3 years”.
According to the bill distributed to journalists, Chega wants to remove this point and replace it, proposing that it establish that “the Assembly of the Republic must authorise deputies to be heard as deponents or defendants, whenever the facts underlying the request do not relate to votes or opinions expressed in the exercise of their functions”.
The practice has been for parliament to authorise the lifting of a deputy's immunity whenever requested by a court.
However, in statements to journalists in the Assembly of the Republic, André Ventura announced that “a new bill will be submitted to parliament amending the Statute of Deputies, and which will then be reflected in a project of constitutional amendment, to end with the system of immunity of deputies”.
The Chega leader considered that “the system in which members have a different status to be heard in court in any process is not justified in the slightest”, maintaining that “deputies are citizens like all others, they have problems and they have virtues like everyone else and they have to answer in court or to the Public Ministry when called upon to do so”.