Arseniy Yatsenyuk calls on Parliament to support radical judicial reform and establishment of State Investigation Bureau
27.10.2015 | 12:41
Information and Communication Department of the Secretariat of the CMU

Prime Minister of Ukraine Arseniy Yatsenyuk informed about the achievements of the Government in combating corruption at a briefing following the meeting with U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker on Monday, October 26.

Answering a question, the Prime Minister stressed that "the most rampant corruption that existed in the energy sector was gas corruption": "This corruption does not exist anymore. I deem it to be an outstanding achievement. There was a lot of talk but a poor result, yet we have yielded results. We have no intermediaries now, we have only direct agreements with Europe, we have the direct agreement with Russia. And due to the direct and transparent agreements, there are no kickbacks in the gas sector in the energy company Naftogaz."

The Government also managed to "break off the 20-year story when the whole privatization was exclusively in the hands of the Ukrainian oligarchs."

Arseniy Yatsenyuk reminded that he made the decision which forbids the sale of 5% of Odesa port-side plant until changes to be made in the law on privatization and order of the state property assessment, "Because I know that this 5% would be purchased not by a foreign investor, but by one of the Ukrainian oligarchs. And then there will no foreign investors."

Much has been done in terms of deregulation, the Prime Minister noted: "The less permits, the less agencies carrying out checks, the less corruption."

In order to solve the problem of domestic corruption, Arseniy Yatsenyuk emphasised, "The Government has done a lot through open data, open registers and the creation of administrative services centers."

At the same time, the Prime Minister pointed out that corruption in Ukraine remained in the State Fiscal Service, customs and those bodies that still have excessive powers.

He noted that he would like to make clear that "the Government has no right and opportunity either under the law or without the law to give any orders neither to the Prosecutor’s Office nor the Anti-Corruption Bureau, nor the courts that are completely independent."

"Their job is to implement anti-corruption legislation and put in jail. It is not the Government's task. The task of the Government is deregulation, as well as adoption of appropriate decisions. This is for which I am personally responsible. The Government should carry out a fair and transparent privatization, improve the management in public companies, while the Prosecutor’s Office and Anti-Corruption Bureau must bring to justice those guilty of corruption crimes," he stressed.

To that end, Arseniy Yatsenyuk highlighted, the Government found funding for the National Anti-Corruption Bureau. "We appreciate the contribution of the U.S. Government, which conducted training of anti-corruption detectives," he added.

Arseniy Yatsenyuk expressed hope that in the near future it would be elected, nominated and appointed an anti-corruption prosecutor, "that is a key prerequisite for the implementation of anti-corruption law."

Another important issue is reforming of the Prosecutor’s Office. Arseniy Yatsenyuk stressed the need of creating a new State Investigation Bureau. The Government has already submitted a relevant bill to the Parliament and it has already passed the first reading. This bill, the Prime Minister stressed, "clearly indicates that we deprive the Prosecutor’s Office of a range of responsibilities": "Today, the Prosecutor's Office is a huge monster that controls everything in the country, from an investigator to an investigation. It is wrong. We believe that the Parliament should support the creation of the State Bureau of Investigation in the second reading."

Arseniy Yatsenyuk emphasized that the Parliament should also back a radical judicial reform proposed by the Government: "We believe that you need to replace all 9,000 judges in an appropriate way, within the law. The judiciary is at the heart of corruption. The rule of law is the foundation of every democratic state, while the rule of law is based on an independent and fair judicial system."

The Prime Minister also stressed the need to increase payments to public officials: "If a civil servant, for example at the customs, gets a hundred dollars per a month, he/she will take bribes." Arseniy Yatsenyuk said that he had appealed to European partners to "create a donor fund for salaries for civil servants who can actually carry out reforms in the country."

"This is our agenda of combating corruption," Arseniy Yatsenyuk pointed out.


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