Go Back   Ukraine.com Discussion Forum > Society > Politics

Notices


Corruption in Ukraine

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
  #15 (permalink)  
Old 2nd December 2014, 02:36
Hannia Hannia is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 26,901
Hannia will become famous soon enough
Bloomberg News
Ukraine Revolution Fails Business as Graft Envelops Bureaucracy
By James M. Gomez, Kateryna Choursina and Aliaksandr Kudrytski December 01, 2014

Thirteen floors above a snow-covered complex on the outskirts of Kiev, in a half-built high-rise, Egor Popov wondered aloud when the warren of dusty rooms would be ready for move-in: maybe next year, probably not.

Presales on the 1,210-unit Sun Gate’s fourth wing, still a concrete-and-brick skeleton accessible only by a shaky open-air elevator, may be delayed, he said. Not because of a lack of financing or demand for flats. The issue is the nine layers of red tape and graft requests that are part of finishing the project, said Popov, a spokesman for TMM Real Estate Development Plc (TR61), Ukraine’s only publicly listed developer.

A year after Ukrainians rose up against the pro-Russian policies of then-President Viktor Yanukovych, business leaders still wait for an end to corruption and cronyism, promised by the revolution’s leaders. Even as war rages in the east and the deepest recession since 2009 shows no sign of lifting, the president, premier and foreign minister said in the past week that graft is the nation’s biggest threat. Ukraine ranks as Europe’s worst on Transparency International’s corruption index.

“Man cannot live by patriotism alone,” said Popov as blue-and-yellow Ukrainian flags fluttered from balcony railings across the courtyard. “The year that’s passed hasn’t brought many positive things to ordinary people. Bureaucracy and corruption just haven’t changed.”

As foreign investors flee the former Soviet republic, Ukraine relies on a $17 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund to stay afloat. The hryvnia has lost 45 percent against the dollar this year, the biggest decline among all currencies tracked by Bloomberg. Central bank reserves are at $12.6 billion, the lowest level since March 2005.
IMF Departure

It may get worse. IMF negotiators left Kiev on Nov. 25 without an agreement needed for disbursement of a $2.8 billion installment of the loan. Two days later, lawmakers met one of the key concerns by agreeing on a government coalition, a month after snap parliamentary elections.

Parliament is scheduled to vote today on whether to approve new cabinet members following October elections. The cabinet’s “key challenge” will be to fight “total corruption,” President Petro Poroshenko said last week.

Ukraine has been in tumult since December 2013, following Yanukovych’s surprise about-face on his promise to sign a European Union trade agreement, the first step in eventual membership. Instead, he sided with Russia, sparking mass demonstrations that choked Kiev’s city center for months and led to the deaths of more than 100 protesters.
Crimea Takeover

The country was rocked further by Russia’s forced annexation of the Crimea peninsula in March and the ensuing conflict in the eastern regions of Luhansk and Donetsk. Ukraine, the U.S. and the EU accuse Russia of financing and supporting the separatist effort with military aid. Russia denies accusations it is fomenting the conflict, saying it is only supplying humanitarian aid to pro-Russian rebels.

Even so, business leaders and economists say the government should have done better in stamping out corruption and red tape and has been hiding its failure behind the war effort.

Business people “are frustrated by the lack of progress,” said Nicholas Burge, the head of the European Commission’s trade and economic delegation to Ukraine. If the incoming government fails to implement changes in its first six months, “then that window will have been lost.”

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development President Suma Chakrabarti, who met with Poroshenko and Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk on Nov. 25, said the two leaders agreed on establishing a Ukrainian “business ombudsman” by year’s end.

“There is much more political commitment” to fight graft than a year ago, Chakrabarti said in a phone interview after the meeting. “But it will not happen tomorrow. No country has ever managed to tackle corruption in one year.”

Ukraine ranks 144th among 177 nations in last year’s corruption-perception list by Berlin-based Transparency International, unchanged from the year before. The World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business index shows Ukraine at 96, better than only Bosnia Herzegovina in Europe.

Investigative journalist Tetiana Chornovol, appointed in the spring to lead the anti-graft office, quit in August. She said it was useless because there is no political will to conduct a full-scale war on corruption.

One sign of action can be seen on the website of Ukraine’s prosecutor-general’s office, which regularly reports on arrests and seizures. Few names are given in the announcements, mostly companies only, and progress of the cases isn’t publicly available. Ukraine Revolution Fails Business as Graft Envelops Bureaucracy - Businessweek
__________________

æ, !

Hannia - Hania - Mighthelp
Reply With Quote
  #16 (permalink)  
Old 3rd December 2014, 03:06
Hannia Hannia is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 26,901
Hannia will become famous soon enough

Kyiv court rules against Putin’s crony
Anna Mostovych EUROMAIDAN PRESS

The Kyiv Court of Appeals has reversed a lower court’s decision and dismissed Viktor Medvechuk’s suit against former National Security Council Secretary Andriy Paribiy.

Parubiy wrote about it in his Facebook:

“This summer during one of the press conferences, I, as Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council, publicly stated that Viktor Medvedchuk is a criminal who has been involved in the Russian invasion. Medvedchuk is one of the key organizers … who prepared the insurrection in Ukraine and who prepared the ground for Russian troops to invade Ukraine, ” he wrote.

According to Parubiy, his declaration succeeded in eliminating Medvedchuk from the Minsk ceasefire

“I’m not afraid to say that my statement and its publicity knocked Medvedchuk out of the Minsk negotiations. I consider that my contribution,” he said.

Medvedchuk then filed a “defamation” suit in the Pechersk district court in Kyiv and demanded one token hryvnia in compensation. As expected, he won his case in the Pechersk court, which has been accused of other questionable rulings, including the sentencing of Yulia Tymoshenko to prison more than three years ago on politically motivated charges and the “unfreezing” of the assets and accounts of Serhiy Arbuzov, Yanukovych’s corrupt former deputy prime minister. Additionally, as reported by the Kyiv Post, the court has ordered the release of several individuals implicated in the killings on Euromaidan earlier this year.

Parubiy, however, appealed the decision with the Kyiv Court of Appeals, which overturned the lower court’s decision and rejected Medvedchuk’s claim.


Kyiv court rules against Putin’s crony
medvedchuk

2014/12/02 • News

Article by: Anna Mostovych

The Kyiv Court of Appeals has reversed a lower court’s decision and dismissed Viktor Medvechuk’s suit against former National Security Council Secretary Andriy Paribiy.

Parubiy wrote about it in his Facebook:

“This summer during one of the press conferences, I, as Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council, publicly stated that Viktor Medvedchuk is a criminal who has been involved in the Russian invasion. Medvedchuk is one of the key organizers … who prepared the insurrection in Ukraine and who prepared the ground for Russian troops to invade Ukraine, ” he wrote.
parubiy4 300x208 Kyiv court rules against Putins crony

Andriy Parubiy

According to Parubiy, his declaration succeeded in eliminating Medvedchuk from the Minsk ceasefire negotiations. “I’m not afraid to say that my statement and its publicity knocked Medvedchuk out of the Minsk negotiations. I consider that my contribution,” he said.

Medvedchuk then filed a “defamation” suit in the Pechersk district court in Kyiv and demanded one token hryvnia in compensation. As expected, he won his case in the Pechersk court, which has been accused of other questionable rulings, including the sentencing of Yulia Tymoshenko to prison more than three years ago on politically motivated charges and the “unfreezing” of the assets and accounts of Serhiy Arbuzov, Yanukovych’s corrupt former deputy prime minister. Additionally, as reported by the Kyiv Post, the court has ordered the release of several individuals implicated in the killings on Euromaidan earlier this year.

Parubiy, however, appealed the decision with the Kyiv Court of Appeals, which overturned the lower court’s decision and rejected Medvedchuk’s claim.

“Thus all attempts by Medvedchuk to use the courts to persuade the public that he is not a criminal have failed completely. Now it is up to the prosecutor’s office to conduct an appraisal of Medvedchuk’s activities,” Parubiy concluded.

Viktor Medvedchuk is a Ukrainian politician and oligarch who at one time was former President Leonid Kuchma’s chief of staff and was considered to be the man behind-the-scenes in Viktor Yanukovych’s 2004 presidential election. As chairman of the pro-Russian political organization Ukrainian Choice, Medvedchuk publicly attacked the European Union and the proposed Association Agreement as well as the Euromaidan protests. He is believed to be especially close to Russia’s President Vladimir Putin. In fact, Putin and the wife of Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev are the godparents of one of Medvedchuk’s daughters.

In March this year he was placed on the White House sanctions list of individuals involved in the crisis in Ukraine for “threatening the peace, security, stability, sovereignty, or territorial integrity of Ukraine, and for undermining Ukraine’s democratic institutions and processes… and because he is a leader of an entity that has, or whose members have, engaged in actions or policies that undermine democratic processes or institutions in Ukraine and actions or policies that threaten the peace, security, stability, sovereignty, or territorial integrity of Ukraine.”

In July this year he served as mediator during the initial ceasefire negotiations between the armed insurgents and the Ukrainian government at the request of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and apparently at Putin’s insistence. It was believed that Putin wanted to have him named governor of the Donetsk Oblast, thus officially returning him to Ukrainian politics.

Parubiy declared in July that based on the information he had received from sources in Eastern Ukraine, Medvechuk had been preparing and financing separatist groups for the past two years and that he therefore was not eligible to participate in the negotiations. Later, Medvedchuk announced he would no longer attend negotiations of the so-called tripartite contact group.

In early January 2014, Medvedchuk won a slander suit against writer Oksana Zabuzhko, who had accused him of involvement in the provocations against the Euromaidan protestors on November 30 — December 1, 2013.

However, with the recent decision by the Kyiv Appellate Court, it appears that Parubiy can safely continue calling Medvedchuk a criminal. Kyiv court rules against Putin’s crony | EUROMAIDAN PRESS | News and Opinion from Across Ukraine
__________________

æ, !

Hannia - Hania - Mighthelp
Reply With Quote
  #17 (permalink)  
Old 3rd December 2014, 13:20
Hannia Hannia is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 26,901
Hannia will become famous soon enough
Protests in another Ukrainian corrective colony
03.12.14 HUMAN RIGHTS IN UKRAINE

Following reports of a hunger strike involving a number of prisoners at the Zamkova Corrective Colony No. 58 in Izyaslav, a monitoring group with representatives of the Kharkiv Human Rights Group visited the colony without any warning on Nov 25.

The monitoring group visited the high security unit for life prisoners and various punishment cells, and spoke with prisoners.

They heard numerous allegations by the prisoners of rights violations by personnel which need to be sent to the relevant authorities to be checked. There were mass complaints about the head of the colony and his deputy. According to prisoners they spoke with, over 200 prisoners have been on hunger strike since 20-21 November in protest at the actions of the management. There have been no checks of their state of health by doctors since then.

A number of complaints were recorded on video. The prisoners allege:

failure to provide medical care;

use of slave labour;

use of disciplinary penalties as persecution for complaints against the personnel;

infringement of the right to unimpeded sending of letters.

The management denies that the men are on hunger strike and says that the conflict has been artificially created. It asserts that all of this is about a small number of prisoners trying to get an easing of the prison regime, one not envisaged by law. It asserts that these prisoners are stirring up others, and that it is therefore transferring the prisoners who allegedly do this to other institutions.

Infringements detected

During a preliminary visit by the KHPG monitoring group on Aug 20, excessive use of punishment cells as a form of disciplinary penalty for small disciplinary misdemeanours (like clothing infringements) was noted.

The group also found then that there were prisoners who had not been sentenced to life imprisonment being held in the high security.

Both of the above were sent in a report to the colony administration. A letter back, signed by the head of the colony, asserted that in the high-security unit for life prisoners there were no longer any prisoners not sentenced to life. However on Nov 25 when they visited this unit, they found D., who is not a life prisoner. He complained of bad treatment by the personnel, and of not being given medical care.

Many prisoners complain of infringements of the right to work: use of unpaid labour; being forced to work or use of refusal to work as grounds for disciplinary measures. The group notes that this needs separate investigation.

Two prisoners who complained about personnel were found to have been moved after the visit on Nov 25. These prisoners have been examined by doctors and a representative of the Human Rights Ombudsperson’s Office. The results are not yet known, but the KHPG report states that if injuries were established, the appropriate proceedings will be initiated.

A previous protest at the Berdychiv Colony, as reported, resulted in further infringements with prisoners beaten by members of a special response Penitentiary Service unit and prisoners then transferred to other institutions (more details here). Protests in another Ukrainian corrective colony :: khpg.org
__________________

æ, !

Hannia - Hania - Mighthelp
Reply With Quote
  #18 (permalink)  
Old 8th December 2014, 15:31
Hannia Hannia is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 26,901
Hannia will become famous soon enough
Lustration law yields meager results
Dec. 8, 2014, 2:58 p.m. | Kyiv Post+ — by Oleg Sukhov KYIV POST

Ukraine's lustration law, signed by President Petro Poroshenko in October, was supposed to be more wide-ranging and comprehensive than in most of Eastern Europe but so far the results have been meager.

Poroshenko himself and government agencies have been accused of dragging their feet on the law's implementation, while courts have already challenged the constitutionality of the legislation. Critics have also argued that some key aspects of the law like the lustration of those who worked under former President Viktor Yanukovych, the lustration of judges and property lustration would not work in practice.

The law seeks to fire top Yanukovych-era officials, agents and employees of the Soviet Union's State Security Committee, or KGB, Soviet communist functionaries, those implicated in corruption and judges who made unlawful decisions.

Obstacles and sabotage

One of the major blows to the law was dealt in November, when a Kharkiv court canceled the lustration of Volodymyr Sukhodubov, a former deputy prosecutor of the Kharkiv Oblast.

Meanwhile, the Foreign Intelligence Service challenged the law at the Constitutional Court in October. This decision could not have been made without the president's approval because the service reports to him, Leonid Antonenko, a counsel at Ukraine’s Sayenko Kharenko law firm and the author of an alternative lustration bill, told the Kyiv Post.

The Supreme Court and the Supreme Specialized Court have also disputed the law's legitimacy at the Constitutional Court.

Yegor Sobolev, an author of the law who headed non-governmental Lustration Committee until his election to parliament, said Poroshenko apparently lacked political will to enforce the lustration law, citing the example of Kirovohrad Oblast Governor Serhiy Kuzmenko, a former member of the Party of Regions.

In September Kuzmenko was appointed governor, and in October the Cabinet asked Poroshenko to fire him because he held top regional government jobs under Yanukovych. However, Kuzmenko is still in power.

The Presidential Administration did not respond to a request for comment.

Ukriane's Security Service (SBU) has not been eager to implement lustration either. Sobolev said that about 50 people had been fired from the agency, far less than expected. Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, head of the service, bypassed the ban on hiring graduates of KGB schools by saying that he studied at one but did not graduate.

The Justice Ministry has also been accused of sabotaging the law.

A complete list of Yanukovych-era officials to be fired was supposed to be compiled in 10 days after the law came into effect on Oct. 16, Antonenko said.

"Very simple mathematics gives us grounds to see 5,000 to 10,000 people on the list," he argued, referring to the number of government jobs subject to lustration under the law.

As of Dec. 8, the list includes only 357 people, according to the Justice Ministry's site. But the ministry, Sobolev and Leonid Yemets, a lawmaker and co-sponsor of the law, argued that the list compiled within 10 days was not supposed to be exhaustive and would subsequently expand.

Antonenko also said that the list did not include a single big name like former Prosecutor General Viktor Pshonka, former President Viktor Yanukovych, former Prime Minister Mykola Azarov and former presidential chief of staff Serhiy Lyovochkin. Sobolev said, however, that they were lustrated automatically because they do not hold government positions now and were not supposed to be included in the list.

The Justice Ministry declined to comment on the issue in a response to a request sent by the Kyiv Post.

Wholesale approach

Antonenko attributed problems with the law's implementation to what he believes to be an excessive number of people subject to lustration.

In contrast with Ukraine, in most Eastern European countries, except the Czech Republic, lustration was only applied to agents and employees of secret services, not party functionaries or government employees. In most of those countries, the process has encountered major legal obstacles, with courts repealing some of the lustration laws.

The Czech Republic was an exception because its constitution was changed in a way that facilitated comprehensive lustration, Antonenko said.

When Ukraine's Justice Ministry began enforcing the law, it faced the unfairness and impossibility of enforcing this "wholesale approach," he argued.

"I interpret it as selective justice," he said. "They fired those whom they deemed proper to fire and made exceptions for others."

Antonenko also argued that new officials replacing those lustrated did not hold a moral high ground, unlike West German officials in East Germany when the countries merged in 1990.

"There is no guarantee they will be different," he said. "The same system of coordinates remains."

One problem with the law is that, while in Eastern Europe lustration was applied to those who posed a threat to democracy, in Ukraine it will also apply to those who pose no such threat, for example heads of regional governments' economy departments, Antonenko said.

The implication is that such officials are "likely" to be corrupt, he said. "But the concept 'likely' contradicts the rule of law," he added.

Property lustration

Property lustration, which is expected to be a major tool for fighting corruption, envisages firing officials who own a lot of real estate that cannot be explained from their declarations.

As of Dec. 8, 895 people are being checked by the Justice Ministry both in terms of property declarations and for their links to the KGB and the Soviet Union's Communist Party.

But Antonenko argues that the procedure will be purely formal and will not help fight corruption because the origin of officials' property will not be checked.

"We shouldn't expect any discoveries there because the old rules (for property declarations) were written by the (Yanukovych) government," he argued.

The new anti-corruption law passed by the Verkhovna Rada in October envisages more thorough inspections of officials' property but the first declarations under that law are to be filed in April 2016, and by that time officials will be able to hide their property, Antonenko said.

Yemets agreed that the existing procedures for inspecting officials' wealth were insufficient. He said that constitutional changes and changes to tax law should be made to improve this, and the yet-to-be-created Anti-Corruption Bureau would address this issue.

Sobolev also said that it was hard to track the sources of officials property and suggested passing new measures like open property registers to make property lustration more efficient.

Earlier this year Antonenko wrote an alternative version of the lustration bill that envisages strictly inspecting the origin of officials' property.

Similar measures have been implemented in many European countries as part of anti-corruption laws, though they were not called "property lustration," with Antonenko's bill based specifically on Romanian experience.

"We should find out where their children study, why they cross the border and information on foreign resorts, hotels, bank accounts and securities," Antonenko said.

The bill also seeks to introduce the concept of market value for officials' property, which will also make it easier to reveal corrupt schemes.

Antonenko's bill was submitted to the Verkhovna Rada but only line from it was incorporated into the final lustration law, with most of it being discarded.

Another clause that will not work is the one on firing judges who made unlawful decisions during the EuroMaidan Revolution, Antonenko said.

He added that the current lustration law effectively blocked this possibility, compared with the previous law on the lustration of judges, passed in April. The process will be obstructed because, under the new law, such cases will be considered by court chairmen, not an independent commission, he said.

The Justice Ministry declined to comment on the issues in its response to the Kyiv Post.
Lustration law yields meager results
__________________

æ, !

Hannia - Hania - Mighthelp
Reply With Quote
  #19 (permalink)  
Old 8th December 2014, 18:12
Hannia Hannia is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 26,901
Hannia will become famous soon enough
19:10 08.12.2014 INTERFAX-UKRAINE
Court prevents defense attorneys from lifting seizure of Yanukovych bank accounts – Ukraine prosecutor general

Ukraine's prosecutor general, Vitaliy Yarema, claimed that former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych's defense attorneys had turned to the court in order to secure a court order to lift the seizure of Yanukovych's bank accounts and remove his assets from Ukraine.

"Viktor Yanukovych's defense attorneys on Friday made an attempt to secure the withdrawal of UAH 20 million from his bank accounts with Oschadbank and also to lift the seizure of these assets and remove them from Ukraine," Yarema aid at a press conference in Kyiv on Monday.

"There have been contacts with the Pechersky court. We were informed in due time. The court turned down the defense attorneys' plea at the request of the Prosecutor General's Office," he said.

"We are in control of the situation. However, as you see, people now on the wanted list, among them Yanukovych, are doing all they can to remove the assets that still remain in Ukraine, abroad. But thanks to joint efforts, being made by law enforcement services and by organizations that have to do with the investigation, we keep the situation under control," the prosecutor general said.
Court prevents defense attorneys from lifting seizure of Yanukovych bank accounts – Ukraine prosecutor general
__________________

æ, !

Hannia - Hania - Mighthelp
Reply With Quote
  #20 (permalink)  
Old 9th December 2014, 14:20
Hannia Hannia is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 26,901
Hannia will become famous soon enough
14:53 09.12.2014 INTERFAX-UKRAINE
Initial lustration wave covers almost 140 at PGO, first deputy public prosecutor being investigated

The Public Prosecutor's Office of Ukraine is investigating if the First Deputy Public Prosecutor Mykola Herasymiuk is eligible for dismissal under the law on lustration.

Public Prosecutor of Ukraine Vitaliy Yarema said at a press conference on Monday in Kyiv that a total of 138 employees of Public Prosecutor's Office were dismissed under lustration law.

"Another 300 persons will go under lustration in the second wave, the documents are being prepared," Yarema said.

As for two deputy public prosecutors – Anatoliy Danylenko and Herasymiuk, Yarema said that Danylenko did not violate the law.

"As for Herasymiuk, he was really deputy head of law enforcement service in 2012-2013. He wrote a letter of resignation and it was registered in the Justice Ministry. Under the law [on lustration] we're additionally checking him if he can run posts in the Public Prosecutor's Office," he said.

The law on lustration took effect on October 16, 2014. Initial lustration wave covers almost 140 at PGO, first deputy public prosecutor being investigated
__________________

æ, !

Hannia - Hania - Mighthelp
Reply With Quote
  #21 (permalink)  
Old 9th December 2014, 17:07
Hannia Hannia is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 26,901
Hannia will become famous soon enough
Cabinet to forbid Health Ministry to buy medicines, cancel re-registration of drugs from many countries
09.12.2014 | 16:03 UNIAN

The Cabinet of Ministers intends to cancel the registration of pharmaceuticals and medical products that have already been registered and licensed in the European Union, the United States, Canada, Australia and Japan, Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk said on Tuesday at a meeting of the government.

"In particular, a bill on the actual recognition of all drugs and medicines that are registered in the European Union, the United States, Canada, Australia and Japan, will be submitted to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine," he said.

"[As for] the reform of the health system - I'll start with the most painful thing, medicines,” Yateseniuk said.

“In this case we make an unprecedented step – we will submit to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine a bill on the actual recognition of all drugs and medicines that are [already]registered in the European Union, the United States, Canada, Australia and Japan. This means that we will cancel the bureaucratic and corrupt registration of drugs and medicines that have passed the corresponding registration and licensing in these countries.

"In addition, the Cabinet of Ministers intends to withdraw from the Ministry of Health a number of functions [to do with] the purchase of medicines and medical products, and to submit them to the UN system. A number of vaccines and special medicines will be purchased under the scheme and the model of the UN system."
Cabinet to forbid Health Ministry to buy medicines, cancel re-registration of drugs from many countries : UNIAN news
__________________

æ, !

Hannia - Hania - Mighthelp
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Forum Jump



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 18:47.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.0.0 RC4 © 2006, Crawlability, Inc.