The Fight to put an end to “secret decrees” continues
The Appeal Court in Kyiv has accepted for consideration an appeal lodged by the legal adviser to the “Maidan” Alliance against the Ruling of the Pechersky Court in Kyiv which had refused to accept that the inaction of the President of Ukraine, Viktor Yushchenko, was against the law.
The inaction of the “Orange” President had consisted of not providing a response to a formal request for information which asked that the names and details of Decrees and Instructions of the Head of State issued under the stamp “Not to be published” be given.
On 12 September 2005 the Capitals Pechersky District Court issued a ruling refusing to admit the claim and de facto believing the representative of the respondent on his word, with a letter being presented at the court hearing which was supposedly a letter of the Secretariat of the President (and not of the person to whom the request for information was addressed, of course) containing a refusal to provide the information. As “proof” that this response had been sent, the court of first instance accepted a sheet from a supposedly internal register of outgoing documents of the Secretariat which had neither signatures nor stamps.
The battle, therefore, continues and if there is no end to the practice of issuing new classified decrees and if previously issued “secret material” is not made public, the President can expect new unpleasant court encounters. In the next few days the number of appeals should rise.