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Weekly analytics of the Centre of Policy and Legal Reform 28 June — 4 July, 2022

05.07.2022

Political Points of the Centre of Policy and Legal Reform include a weekly expert analysis of the most important processes in Ukraine in areas of constitutionalism, political parties and elections, governance and public administration reform, judiciary, combatting corruption, criminal justice, etc.

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The Ethics Council completes assessment of candidates for the HCJ under the quota of scholars


Event

On June 30, the Ethics Council completed the assessment of candidates for the High Council of Justice (hereinafter – HCJ) under the quota of the Council of Scholars, based on the results of four candidates were recommended for election – namely, O. Horokh, S. Melenko, M Khavronyuk and D.  Lukyanov.

On the same and the following day (July 1), eight more candidates for the HCJ were interviewed by the Ethics Council under the quota of the Congress of Judges.

Also on June 30, the Council of Prosecutors informed the Office of the Verkhovna Rada of the date of the extraordinary all-Ukrainian conference of prosecutors, which is scheduled for August 26 of this year, and the fact that its agenda includes the election of two HCJ members. The acceptance of documents from candidates started on July 4.

CPLR’s assessment

1. In total, the Congress of Scholars elects two members for the HCJ. Currently, one position is vacant. Another position is held by V. Hryshchuk, who in May 2022 was found by the Ethics Council as not meeting the criteria of integrity and professional ethics. According to the law, the Congress of Scholars must consider the issue of his dismissal within three months.

Initially, the Congress of Scholars that was supposed to fill the vacant HCJ position was scheduled for December 2021, but due to the fact that the Ethics Council did not provide a list of candidates recommended for election, the work of the Congress was suspended for an indefinite period. Thus, in the near future, the Congress of Scholars can resume its activity, fill the vacant HCJ positions, and consider the issue of V. Hryschuk’s dismissal.

According to DEJURE Foundation, the Anti-Corruption Action Center, and Automaidan, there are circumstances that could indicate the failure to meet the integrity criteria by two of the candidates (R. Melenko and D. Lukyanov) recommended by the Ethics Council. However, due to the fact that the Ethics Council did not broadcast the interviews, it is impossible to assess whether those candidates managed to refute such circumstances.

2. As previously reported by the CPLR’s experts, the Congress of Judges where eight members of the HCJ were supposed to be elected was scheduled for July 11-13. However, on July 4, the Council of Judges postponed the Congress, as the Ethics Council did not have time to interview all the candidates for the HCJ.

3. In recent months, the procedure for constituting the HCJ’s composition has intensified. In case all vacant positions for which competitions were announced were to be filled, it is likely that it will be possible to restore the HCJ authorized composition by the fall.