Rada amends Constitution of Ukraine in part of justice
The Verkhovna Rada has finally adopted as a whole the law on amendments to the Constitution of Ukraine in part of justice.
Some 335 people's deputies voted for the law in parliament with the quorum being 300 votes.
Some 138 deputies from the Bloc of Petro Poroshenko faction, 80 from People's Front, 38 from the Opposition Bloc, none from Samopomich, one from the Radical Party, 13 from Batkivschyna, 22 from the Vidrodzhennia Party, and 18 from the People's Will party supported the document.
Changes to the Constitution in terms of justice increase the age limit for the post of judge. They can be Ukrainian citizens not younger than 30 years (previously not younger than 25). As before, judges can work up to 65 years. In addition, work experience in the field of law has been increased - now it is five years (formerly three years). Now the Basic Law no longer requires that candidates for the post of judge should live in Ukraine for at least 10 years.
The Higher Council of Justice will appear in Ukraine instead of the Higher Council of Law, whose powers will be broader than those of the Higher Council of Law. Thus, the Higher Council of Justice will decide on dismissal of judges from office and transfer to another court, consent to detention or arrest of judges, and make decisions to suspend judges from the exercise of justice. The document stipulates the procedure of forming the Higher Council of Justice, which will consist of 21 members.
The president of Ukraine will appoint judges on the proposal of the Higher Council of Justice. According to the amendments to the Basic Law, any person may file a constitutional complaint to the Constitutional Court if considers the law applied in the final judgment on his case contradicts the Constitution of Ukraine.
"A constitutional complaint can be lodged in case if all the other national legal remedies have been exhausted," the document says.
In addition, the clauses that gave supervisory role to the prosecutor's office have been taken out of the Constitution.
The Constitution NOW provides that "Ukraine may recognize the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on terms defined by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court."
According to the amendments, the Verkhovna Rada and the High Council of Justice will now give its consent for detention and custody of judges.
The amendments to the Constitution in part of the justice system will enter into force three months from the day following the day of the publication of the relevant law. At the same time, the provisions relating to the recognition of the ICC jurisdiction by Ukraine will enter into force in three years.
As reported, in early February, Ukraine's Constitutional Court declared that the revised bill on amendments to the Constitution in the field of justice complies with Articles 157 and 158 of the Fundamental Law.