12:19 16.03.2021

Rada sends bill on amending Constitution on procedure for appointing, dismissing directors of NABU, SBI to Constitutional Court

3 min read
Rada sends bill on amending Constitution on procedure for appointing, dismissing directors of NABU, SBI to Constitutional Court

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine has sent to the Constitutional Court bill (No. 5133) amending the Constitution of Ukraine concerning the procedure for appointing and dismissing directors of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU) and the State Bureau of Investigations (SBI) to obtain a conclusion on the compliance of the bill with the requirements of Articles 157 and 158 of the Constitution.

Some 267 parliamentarians voted for Resolution No. 5133-b on including the bill in the agenda and sending it to the Constitutional Court.

The bill proposes to amend Articles 85 and 106, according to which the parliament agrees to the president to appoint and dismiss the directors of NABU and SBI based on the results of a competitive selection.

According to the explanatory note, the introduction of these amendments to the Constitution will help to optimize and balance the powers of the head of state and parliament in the field of appointing and dismissing directors of NABU and SBI, and will also ensure maximum independence and efficiency of the functioning of the agencies headed by them.

According to Fedir Venislavsky, the presidential envoy to the Constitutional Court (the Servant of the People faction), the proposed amendments to the Constitution "will ensure the maximum independence of these anti-corruption institutions."

The MP said that according to the decision of the Constitutional Court, the president does not have constitutional powers to appoint the head of NABU, and the relevant bill was registered in the Verkhovna Rada, but it bears no relation to bill No. 5133.

At the same time, MP from the Batkivschyna faction Serhiy Vlasenko believes that the introduction of these amendments to the Constitution will allow the president to influence the appointment of the leaders of the NABU and SBI.

"This bill bears no relation to the fight against corruption. This is a bill on control over the law enforcement system. This bill on the president's ability to influence the appointment of the leaders of the NABU and SBI in an unconstitutional, illegal, illegitimate way," Vlasenko said from the rostrum of the Verkhovna Rada.

According to the Constitution, the Verkhovna Rada considers the bill on amending the Constitution if there is a conclusion of the Constitutional Court on the compliance of the bill with the requirements of Articles 157 and 158 of the Constitution.

According to Article 157, the Constitution of Ukraine cannot be changed if the amendments provide for the abolition or restrictions of human and civil rights and freedoms, or if they are aimed at abolishing independence or violating the territorial integrity of Ukraine. According to the same article, the Constitution cannot be changed in conditions of martial law or a state of emergency.

As noted in Article 158 of the Constitution, the bill on amending the Constitution, which was considered by the Verkhovna Rada, and the law was not adopted, can be submitted to parliament no earlier than a year after the date of the decision on this bill. According to this article, the Verkhovna Rada during its term of office cannot change the same provisions of the Constitution twice.

The Constitution of Ukraine provides that a bill on amendments to the Basic Law, previously approved by a majority of the constitutional composition of the Verkhovna Rada, shall be considered adopted if at the regular session of the parliament no less than two-thirds of the constitutional composition of the Verkhovna Rada voted for it [300 votes].

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