Zelensky's envoy in Constitutional Court slams decision on e-declarations

Zelensky's envoy in Constitutional Court slams decision on e-declarations

The Ukrainian president's representative in the Constitutional Court, Fedir Venislavsky, has said that the court's decision to declare unconstitutional Article 366-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine regarding punishment for inaccurate declaration of assets is poorly motivated from the legal point of view.

He stated this in an exclusive comment to Ukrinform.

"If you systematically study the arguments presented in the motivational part, look at the operative part, the arguments do not allow saying impartially that the decision of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine is justified. In my opinion, there was no legal argument, no legal justification that would make it possible to make such a decision. Therefore, no doubt, the Constitutional Court acted in a biased manner. Moreover, as is already known, there was a real conflict of interest as several judges of the Constitutional Court were in the process of inspections and were brought to justice under anti-corruption provisions of law, which they declared unconstitutional. Therefore, undoubtedly, the decision is poorly motivated from the legal point of view. It is very difficult to say that it is legal," Venislavsky said.

At the same time, he said he did not rule out that the decision of the Constitutional Court would have negative international legal consequences, as representatives of the European Union have already sent an official letter to the Government of Ukraine stating that "the issue of suspension of the visa-free regime and other forms of cooperation between Ukraine and the EU will be raised."

"But I think that in the near future, perhaps even today, the president will initiate a bill that will correct the situation, and I think that the negative consequences of international law and the termination of cooperation with our international partners will not occur thanks to the president's actions," Venislavsky said.

In addition, he stressed that the decision of the Constitutional Court had blocked personnel policy both at the level of civil service and at the level of service in local government agencies.

"Certain provisions of the law on corruption prevention, after their recognition as unconstitutional, expired on October 27. One of such provisions was on access to the asset declarations of civil servants, special inspections that cannot be conducted without an analysis of the declarations. Therefore, the appointment to state positions and positions in local government agencies is impossible without such a mandatory condition as a special inspection," he said.

The Constitutional Court on October 27 declared unconstitutional Article 366-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, which provides for penalties for incorrect information in asset declarations.

The article provides for liability in the form of a fine or imprisonment for the submission of deliberately inaccurate information in asset declarations by persons authorized to perform the functions of the state or local government.

On October 28, the National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) closed access to the register of asset declarations in pursuance of the decision of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine.

The NAPC said that the judges of the Constitutional Court had made this decision in their own interests, as the agency found signs of several judges declaring false information in their asset declarations.

At the same time, the President's Office said that President Volodymyr Zelensky would use his right of a legislative initiative to restore the sustainable and most effective operation of the electronic asset declaration system and ensure the inevitability of liability for intentional violations of these rules.

In this regard, Zelensky on October 29 convened an urgent meeting of the National Security and Defense Council to determine measures for the immediate proper response of the state to new threats and challenges to national security and defense.


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