On 30 December, a law reinstating the powers of the National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) and the liability for inaccuracies in asset declarations came into force. The law restores the powers of the NACP, including in relation to judges and judges of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine (CCU).
The document provides for the procedure for the agency’s response to detection of violations of the relevant law, signs of corruption and corruption-related offences. The peculiarities of such a response are established in case of commitment of these actions by judges or judges of the CCU.
The law also provides for open, round-the-clock access to the Unified State Register of Asset Declarations of Persons Authorised to Perform the Functions of the State or Local Self-Government. In addition, the law establishes the peculiarities of conducting a full-fledged inspection of declarations and monitoring of the lifestyle of persons who submit a declaration, as well as the procedure for taking some additional financial control measures.
The NACP, commenting on the restoration of its powers, said that this will not happen in “one moment.” “The new law introduces a number of changes. We must approve updated legislative acts to fully resume work. The law gives us two months to amend the procedure for verifying declarations, coordinating them with the High Council of Justice and the Constitutional Court, as well as registering with the Ministry of Justice,” the NACP stressed.
The NACP also recalled their comments on the law on the resumption of activities:
- The law obliges the NACP to inform the High Council of Justice or the CCU about the start of monitoring the lifestyle of any judge. The agency believes that monitoring will not be effective in this case.
- Only the NACP chair and the deputies have the right to draw up reports on judges. The agency says that other categories of officials (lawmakers or police officers) may now also want separate procedures for themselves.
- The law requires the NACP to create an electronic “queue” of declarations. However, the programmes will not make the process efficient.