Corruption system puts pressure on anti-corruption agencies, but civil society has the final say

The work of anti-corruption agencies interferes with a corrupt system. The representatives of the system notice that the real results in fighting against top corruption and cannot accept the fact that they will have to take responsibility for their actions. This was stated by the participants of the public discussion ‘Who is interfered with independent anti-corruption agencies?’ The event was held on September 23, 2020, by the Civil Oversight Council at NABU.

As the participants of the discussion noted, among the institutions of the anti-corruption infrastructure since its first results the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU) had suffered from the pressure the most.

“The pressure on NABU comes in various forms. First, we are talking on political pressure, which consists of the constant initiation of various amendments to the Laws. They complicated the operational activities of the National Bureau and the process of bringing to justice for corruption,” Andriy Kaluzhynskyy, the Head of the Main Detective Department of NABU said.

The recent decisions of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine, which found certain provisions of the Law “On the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine” as unconstitutional is the threat of deprivation of independence for the National Bureau. It is relevant also for the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office, the future of which largely depends on how open and fair the competition will be hold the selection of its Head, and for the High Anti-Corruption Court. The current situation requires high attention from the civil society and the international partners.

“We express our great support to the anti-corruption agencies of Ukraine as they work in unrealistic conditions. You may take the statistics, the economic effect or any other indicator of their activities to realize that the effect is very high,” Elena Konceviciute, the EUACI Senior Anti-Corruption Adviser stressed.

Alexandra Janovskaia, First Secretary of the European Union Delegation to Ukraine, highlighted progress and expressed support to Ukraine’s fight against corruption:

“The European Union supports the anti-corruption reforms in Ukraine. We are glad that very important institutions have been established since the Revolution of Dignity. EU together with Ukraine’s other international partners considers it crucial for Ukraine to ensure independence and effective functioning of these key new anti-corruption institutions (NABU, SAPO, HACC and NACP)”.

“According to the decisions of the Constitutional Court, the Members of Parliament have to bring the Law “On NABU” into line with the Constitution. Some MPs may use the situation as an opportunity to cancel the anti-corruption reform in times when it had finally started to perform serious results. Our future depends on this reform. The authorities cannot dare to sabotage reforms for Ukraine,” Mark Savchuk, the Head of the Civil Oversight Council at NABU mentioned.

The discussion was held with the participants of the Head of the Main Department of Detectives of NABU Andrij Kaluzhynskyy, the Head of the Civil Oversight Council at NABU Mark Savchuk, the Assistant to the MP Maksym Kostetskyy, the public activist Anton Shvets, the former Prosecutor General Ruslan Ryaboshapka, the Executive Director of Transparency International Ukraine Andriy Borovyk, the EUACI Senior Anti-Corruption Adviser Elena Konceviciute, Acting Head of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office Maksym Hryschuk and the First Secretary of the European Union Delegation to Ukraine Alexandra Janovskaia.

Video of the event