MPs supported the introduction of a monthly allowance for citizens honored for outstanding service, appointed a judge of the Constitutional Court (in violation of the constitutional procedure), and simplified the procedure for notifying litigants about their lawsuits.
Olha Sovhyria appointed as a judge of the Constitutional Court
Resolution 2442-IX of July 27, 2022
Who is affected: Ukrainian citizens, businesses, government bodies, local governments, the Parliament, the Cabinet, the President, and judges of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine.
Summary of the resolution: MP Olha Sovhyria is appointed as a judge of the Constitutional Court under the quota of the Verkhovna Rada.
What is right: the Parliament filled a missing position in the Constitutional Court. The Court should be able to work faster.
What is wrong:
- MPs violated the Constitution since a person cannot be appointed as a CCU judge if he or she on the day of the appointment is a member of a political party or elected official. Olena Sovhyria was a member of the parliament while being appointed. She was dismissed as an MP only after she was appointed
- a competition that resulted in the appointment of Olha Sovhyria was not the one to select the best candidate. MPs from the Committee on Legal Policy checked only whether candidates meet the formal requirements and did not test candidates’ abilities or skills. Without proper competition, the appointment becomes a political issue, not the question of professionalism as required by the Constitution
- the reform of the Constitutional Court, in particular, the necessity to introduce a competitive selection of judges, is one of the requirements for EU membership. Although a competitive selection as a concept was introduced at the level of constitutional design back in 2016, 9 judges of the CCU appointed since that time, including Olha Sovhyria, have not gone through a proper contest. This means that not only do laws contradict the Constitution but that Ukraine systematically violates its obligations on the matter.
What’s next: Now only 16 of 18 judges of the Constitutional Court are performing their duties. Two more have to be appointed by the Congress of Judges. Another judge, Oleksandr Kasminin, is de facto removed from work because Volodymyr Zelensky has repealed the decree appointing Kasminin.
Voted in favor: all factions and groups except for the European Solidarity, Batkivshchyna, and Holos factions.
Citizens honored for outstanding service and their families are to receive monthly allowances from the state
Drat bill #7141 of March 13, 2022
Status: adopted as a law, awaits to be signed by the President.
Who is affected: Ukrainian citizens and soldiers honored for outstanding service, members of their families, and government bodies. The authors of the bill mentioned that at least 300 persons were honored for outstanding service before the beginning of the full-scale invasion of russia.
Summary of the bill:
- monthly allowance will be paid to:
- citizens awarded with orders Golden Star, Bohdan Khmelnytskyi (of three degrees), or For Courage (of three degrees)
- family members of a citizen so honored if they are pensioners or have disabilities
- children of a citizen so honored if they are under 18 or are studying at secondary school, college, or university (until their education is finished)
- the amount of the allowance will be from one to three minimum wages (from ₴ 6500 to ₴ 19500) and calculated depending on the type of order a person was honored with.
What is right: support and motivation for people who performed an act of heroism.
What is wrong: the explanatory note supporting the bill does not provide proper quantitative and financial projections that can be used to calculate the implementation cost and count how many citizens the bill covers. After the full-scale invasion started, by July 2022, almost 24 thousand people were honored with state awards. The implementation cost of the bill can be unbearable for the government budget. The responsibility to find how many people are to receive an allowance and where to find money MPs have shoved onto the Cabinet’s shoulders.
Voted in favor: all factions and groups.
Lawsuit updates for litigants via Diia
Draft bill # 7315 of April 26, 2022
Status: adopted as a law, awaits to be signed by the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada and the President.
Who is affected: Ukrainian citizens, foreigners, businesses, lawyers, prosecutors, judges, and litigants.
Summary of the bill:
- litigants will have an option to be informed via Diia about the court examining their case, subject matter, place, date, and time of a court hearing, and the final decision in the case
- judges will not be allowed to hold their conferences online if a decision in the lawsuit requires a secret ballot.
What is right:
- litigants will be informed about their lawsuits more effectively and conveniently. Justice will be delivered faster since there will be fewer chances to miss a court hearing
- the secrecy of the ballot will be ensured for judge conferences. For online hearings, it is almost impossible to ensure real secrecy of the ballot, and this affects the results.
Voted in favor: all factions and groups except the European Solidarity faction.
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