Ukraine’s leaders have decided to do without the Venice Commission
Thomas Markert, Secretary of the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission has said that the Ukrainian authorities have not made a request to the Commission to analyze the amendments made to the draft law on the ;parliamentary elections.
Mr Markert says that he only learned that radical changes had been made to the draft law after it was presented for assessment to the Venice Commission after arriving in Ukraine. He explains that he learned that significant amendments had been made only during the parliamentary hearings on 1 November. “Of course we had earlier received certain signals indicating that there were some differences, however up till then we had no idea that the differences were so serious”, Mr Markert said in an interview to Kommersant – Ukraine.
He said that even had the Venice Commission received a request, there would have been no time since the Commission will only be meeting in December, and the law is likely to be passed in the near future.
He added that a superficial perusal of the document showed that new articles had appeared “which created a number of new problems”.
“We have only now received a copy of the draft law, I have it here in a folder – 100 pages in Ukrainian. As you can understand, it’s difficult for me to comment in detail on its provisions. Yet even now I can say that it looks as though the changes made by the majority have created a number of new problems in the electoral law. For example, problems have appeared in the sections on cancelling registration of candidates, on the principles for forming the electoral commissions. These new norms certainly fail to comply with the Venice Commission’s recommendations”,
Please see: Law shown Venice Commission differs from that tabled in parliament for more details about the differences.
Head of the Party of the Regions faction in the Verkhovna Rada, Oleksandr Yefremov had confirmed previously that the “text of the draft law tabled by the coalition is a third different from that drawn up by the Working Group which was assessed by the Venice Commission”.
On 31 October the President’s Adviser, Marina Stavniychuk stated that if the law on the elections was passed in its present form, the President would veto it.