High Court rejects Hanegbi petition

Group called for Hanegbi's resignation following A-G-s decision to indict.

tzahi hanegbi 298.88 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
tzahi hanegbi 298.88
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
The High Court of Justice rejected Monday morning a petition by the Movement for Quality Government demanding the resignation of minister-without-portfolio Tzahi Hanegbi. The group submitted the petition following Attorney General Menahem Mazuz's decision to indict Hanegbi for allegedly making political appointments during his term as environment minister, Army Radio reported. Judge Eliezer Rivlin wrote in the High Court ruling that Knesset elections would take place soon, and that Hanegbi's term as minister "would end anyway." "This is a sensitive time politically, and the court must act with restraint," the ruling continued. In a speech delivered last week at a Jerusalem convention, the attorney general re-asserted that Hanegbi ought to resign his post following the decision to indict him. Education Minister Meir Sheetrit, speaking to students on Sunday, assured them that "Politicians who have been indicted won't remain in the government." Hanegbi lashed out at Mazuz's attempts to force him to quit the cabinet in a speech delivered last week at a Rishon Lezion high school. Asked by a student whether his behavior set a good example for youth, Hanegbi compared himself to a student accused of cheating who was expelled from school before being given a chance to present his side of the story. "I ask you not to judge me prematurely," Hanegbi said. "Lately it's been in fashion to judge people before they are brought to trial. This is wrong and the attorney-general should be fighting to defend the law. His view is certainly unfortunate, but the dispute between us will be settled in a proper forum."