Independent experts in selection commissions that select and vet the individuals who serve in Ukraine’s judiciary and anti-corruption institutions will make it possible to achieve changes that will be the most fundamental renewal of Ukraine’s judiciary since the independence.
“The involvement of independent experts is in compliance with international standards: their crucial role is temporary and justified by the extraordinary circumstances presented by the opportunity Ukraine now has to take a decisive step toward its destiny as a modern European nation,” reads the joint statement by the U.S. Embassy and the Delegation of the European Union.
Ukraine’s partners believe that one critical prerequisite for the success of the fight against corruption and judicial reform is the role of independent experts, nominated by international partners of Ukraine, in the commissions that select and vet the individuals who serve in Ukraine’s judiciary and anti-corruption institutions.
“Because these commissions will ensure that candidates with the highest professional competence and integrity will be selected as Ukraine’s future judges, Special Anti-Corruption Prosecutor, and NABU Director – those who will hold the corrupt to account – they have an important role in shaping Ukraine’s destiny,” says the statement.
The diplomats point out that the role of independent experts has become one of the most important issues in discussions about the future of Ukraine’s reform agenda.
The EU and the US also note that the Venice Commission clearly stated that giving the international members a prevailing vote in case of a tie after a repeat vote is acceptable from the viewpoint of national sovereignty.
In this regard, Ukraine’s partners urge to align the current draft laws, including on the High Qualification Commission of Judges, that are now in parliament with the Venice Commission opinion before their second and final reading.
“The current draft laws, including on the High Qualification Commission of Judges, that are now in parliament need to be aligned with the Venice Commission opinion before their second and final reading,” the statement underscores.
The document also emphasises that the people of Ukraine demanded reforms during the Revolution of Dignity and voted for them, over and over again, in elections. So, it is now up to Ukraine’s leaders to make good on their promises.
As a reminder, the West consistently calls on Ukraine to successfully carry out judicial reform and ensure the independence of anti-corruption bodies.