Democracy in development Constitutional reform set to head agenda and the need for further electoral reform

Ukraine is once again about to embark on a series of debates and potentially futile exercise of seeking further Constitutional reform.

There is almost unanimous opinion that Ukraine’s Constitution is in need of serious review but the problems lies in the detail and the policy of reform. Ukraine has made considerable steps towards democratic reform. Its decision to move towards a Parliamentary democracy as opposed to the previous system of governance by presidential decree was a step in the right direction. It has brought Ukraine more in line with other Western/European democracies along with the adoption of Parliamentary democracy is a significant improvement in the number and extent of checks and balances that were not previously available under the old Presidential dictatorship model .

The problem Ukraine now faces is that there is wide disagreement within the Presidential and Parliament camps about the extent and direction of the political reform.

Ukraine’s political divide.

To understand the issues and politics involved in the proposed constitutional reform it is worth reflect on events that have occurred over the last 12 months.

The President’s political party Our Ukraine wants to see a return to the ‘good old days’ where all the power is centred in the hands of one individual, The President, who currently happens to be their leader.

Victor Yuschenko, Ukraine’s current President was elected on the understanding and agreement that Ukraine would transit towards a parliamentary system of government. Proposals for the adoption a parliamentary democracy was widely supported back in 2002 and 2004. In 2004 proposals to move to a parliamentary system of governance was narrowly defeated when Our Ukraine opportunitictly opposed reform (which failed to achieve the 2/3rds statutory majority by less then 5 votes) in the expectation that they would win the presidency and as such they wanted to hold on to as much power as possible.

It was not until the conflict that arose during the November/December 2004 presidential election, where public support for the two main rival groups was equally divided. In order to bring about a peaceful resolution of the conflict and division all major political parties agreed to the proposed changes to the constitution and the transition to a parliamentary system of parliamentary democracy following the 2006 National Parliament elections. The proposed changes were in line with previous debate but with some concessions made to allow the President to retain authority and power over Foreign Affairs and Defence

Ukraine’s Parliament was elected on a party list system similar to the system that applies to most European Parliamentary democracies.

The March 2006 elections have come and gone.

The conduct of the elections overall were deemed to be open, transparent and fair having received universal endorsement from all international observers. There were some issues of concern and disappointment. 22% of voters were effectively disenfranchised and had no say in who was elected to represent them as a result of the arbitrary 3% quota barrier imposed. One party Natalia Vintenko Bloc received over 3% of the formal vote but fell short by less then 0.05% of the 3% quota of the total overall vote which included informal votes (votes which did not express a clear intention or left blank)

The March 2006 Parliamentary elections were close and mirrored more or less the results of the first round of the 2004 Presidential election.

Victor Yuschenko and his Our Ukraine party had been in power for over 15 months. Our Ukraine and the President failed to capitalise and build support during its time in office. Community support for Our Ukraine and the President dwindled significantly following Yuschenko’s dismissal of Yulia Tymoshenko (The Orange revolution princess) as Prime Minister. In March 2006 Our Ukraine received less then 13% of the overall vote. Yulia Tymoshenko’s block received 22% support, the Socialist Party of Ukraine 6%, the Communists 4% and Party of Regions headed by Victor Yanakovych with 33% support was the highest polling group (under the British and US first past the post electoral system Party of Regions would have been declared the winner)

For a while the results of the election and the numbers looked like the Orange coalition combined support had the numbers to form a governing coalition. but in the period following the national elections Our Ukraine, who had performed dismally in the 2006 elections, refused to give its immediate support to the formation of an Orange coalition.

Ukraine’s Parliament, under the terms of its constitution, had a limit of 3 months from the declaration of the poll and the first day of sitting of the new parliament in which to form a governing coalition and time was fast running out.

The attempted ousting of Yulia

Our Ukraine, at first, tried to oust Yulia Tymoshenko, who controlled most of the numbers of the Orange parliamentary block, from seeking to regain the position of Prime-Minister. Victor Yuschenko had only six months prior to the March election dismissed Yulia Tymoshenko as prime-minister and replaced her with his own party’s nominee from Our Ukraine. Their attempts to oust Yulia Tymoshnko fell on death ears and received little public and internal support.

Our Ukraine having failed to receive public support and internal support for the ousting of Yulia Tymoshenko proceeded to undermine the Orange coalition by attacking the Socialist Party and their desire to share power and secure the position of Parliamentary Speaker. After all Our Ukraine had the presidency, Yulia Tymoshenko had the position of prime Minister it was only fair and just that Olexander Moroz , Socialist Party leader be given the Speaker’s post. This would leave Our Ukraine the right to nominate for vice prime-minter and hold all of the major economic and financial portfolios.

Yulia Tymoshenko was back, having received the highest number of votes amongst the orange coalition parties, she rightly demanded the Prime-ministers position. When Our Ukraine failed in its attempts to oust Yulia from the top position they then embarked on a policy of delay undermining the negotiations and formation of a governing coalition. This delay allowed their man to remain in the top job a few months longer, they refused to sign up as a member of the governing orange coalition opting for more discussion and negotiation with the all parties including Party of Regions. By delaying Our Ukraine hoped that the climate of change would blow their way or circumstances would prevail that would allow the President to dismiss the parliament and assume dictatorial control.

Relations between Orange partners sour

In the months following the parliamentary elections the relationship between Our Ukraine and the other Orange coalition members (Yulia Tymoshenko and the Socialists) began to sour even more, to the extent that there was now serious acrimony and bitter confrontations in public with Yulia Tymoshenko supported by Olexander Moroz on one side making accusations against Our Ukraine on the other. Our Ukraine’s game play showed signs that they were actively seeking to undermine the formation of any parliamentary government.

NATO plays an ill-fated card at the wrong time

Adding to the problems that were in play in the formation of governing coalition in May 2006 NATO and the US forces invaded Crimea. Invited by the President to participate in a strategic war games exercise. This proved to be a disaster in public relations and had a seriously negative impact on political negotiations. Support and public opinion was against Ukraine joining NATO. NATO membership was also opposed by the Socialist Party who maintains a policy of Ukrainian independence. Many political commentators at the time indicated that NATO involvement and timing played a major role in the events that followed. Public opinion was so strong that the US forces were forced to retreat and the planned visit by US President George Bush was cancelled.

Negations for the marriage failed

Rather then come to a quick and mutual understanding and bring the alliance back on track, the delay and bitter infighting continued with Our Ukraine failing to negotiate in good faith. (Information has since come to light that indicates that Our Ukraine were deliberately stalling agreement to form an orange coalition whilst trying to negotiate a then possible grand alliance coalition that included all parties with the exception of the Communist Party). Our Ukraine hoped and expected that by holding out they would be able to bluff their way into power and control, they wanted to dictate all the terms and conditions in relation to the formation of any alliance.

There were many obstacles and hurdles not the least that Yulia Tymoshenko block refused to do a deal with Party of Regions and why should she, the Orange Coalition in theory had the numbers to form a majority in the newly elected Parliament. All that was required was for Our Ukraine to act in good faith and come one board. Agreement between Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc and the Socialist Party had already been reach the only party missing was Our Ukraine.

Constitutional crisis pending

As time went on and the deadline for the formation of a governing coalition came closer relationships between the Orange coalition partners became more and more acuminous to the point where public confidence in the Orange coalition was virtually non existent. Even if the marriage went ahead the extent of acrimony was so great to was doomed to not last. Something had to give and decision had to be made fast. The deadline was fast approaching and if a governing coalition could not be formed soon Ukraine was facing a major constitutional crisis.

Anti-Crisis coalition formed to break deadlock

The break though came when Olexander Moroz and the Socialist Party decided time had run out, they had lost all confidence in Our Ukraine and its willingness to negotiate in good faith and make necessary compromises on policy and the allocation of portfolios.

The 3 month delays in the formation of a governing coalition was beginning to have a serious impact on Ukraine’s economy as a result of the ongoing uncertainly. The restoration of stability and governance was paramount. Olexander Moroz and the Socialists opted for the only other option available to avoid the pending crisis. They agreed with the Party of Regions to form an Anti-Crisis Coalition to allow for the formation of a Parliamentary government.

The anti crisis coalition nominated Olexander Moroz (Socialist party) as parliamentary speaker with Yanakovich (Party of Regions) elected as Prime Minister.

Our Ukraine losses Trump Card as the ground began to shift.

The decision of Olexander Moroz and the Socialist’s changed the outcome of the game, Our Ukraine’s strategy came to a sudden holt. Woken up by reality. Our Ukraine had a chance to form an Orange coalition and to consolidated their position with the support of their Orange allies but its policy of delay and indecisiveness and lack of commitment to the orange democratic ideals and collapsed like a house of cards. No longer holding the trump card Our Ukraine were left with the wrong suit.

Our Ukraine’s lead negotiators soon abandoned Yulia Tymoshenko and approached the governing coalition partners with the aim of seeking to rekindle an alliance and the formation of a new alliance between Party of Regions, the Socialists and Our Ukraine. They offered the support of the Presidency and the possibility of forming a strong stable government. Their offer of a new alliance was based once again on Our Ukraine’s agenda, they wanted to sideline the Communist Party and agree on the adoption of the Our Ukraine’s policy agenda. One of the biggest stumbling blocks was the issue of power sharing and the Ukraine’s membership of NATO, its relationship with America and Russia. Nothing had changed, Our Ukraine was unwilling and unable to compromise on its position in spite it being against public opinion.

Meanwhile Yulia Tymoshenko had resolved to move into opposition and continued to campaign against the new coalition alliance, rightly claiming that Our Ukraine were seeking to join the governing coalition. Half of Our Ukraine wanted to cut a deal and become part of the governing majority the other half sided with Yulia Tymoshenko.

Our Ukraine split their hand

The division within the Our Ukraine camp was beginning to tack its toll; as Our Ukraine tethered in the brink of collapse. The only thing holding them together was the fact that they still held the Office of the Presidency – the Joker of the deck, along with the President’s right to nominate the Foreign Affairs and Defence Minister.

The anti-crisis governing coalition began to consolidate its position whilst negotiations with Our Ukraine were continuing, Yanakovich took control of the government and Moroz was given the task of strengthening parliamentary rule. Portfolios were allocated and at first included members of all parties. When Yulia Tymoshenko made a universal declaration of moving into opposition some of here members had to resign from the Government front benches the resignations filled with members of the governing coalition. The government was in place and stability of the government had been restored as they got on with the business of government consolidating even further the governments position.

Our Ukraine without a home

With the change of fortune, Our Ukraine, having failed to win any concessions or agreements and their inability to offer any compromise or substantial support, was once again faced with reality. left out of the game holding a dud hand. Our Ukraine’s negotiation with the governing coalition came to an end, The governing coalition declared any further negotiations with Our Ukraine as being futile preferring to go it alone then to have to adopt Our Ukraine’s unrealistic policies and demands. Our Ukraine’s proposals rejected for a second time.

Change at the helm

The failure of the Our Ukraine’s leadership team took its toll and its lead negotiators were forced to resign. With no prospect of forming a meaningful alliance with any other political bloc Our Ukraine was left out in the cold and remain a divided party with a minority status in opposition.

Balance of power shifts as parliamentary democracy takes hold

Our Ukraine‘s diminishing standing was also beginning to take its toll on the Office of the President with the President’s public opinion polling at an all time low, no longer able to command respect and authority, the balance of power had clearly shifted to the ruling Parliamentary coalition.

Foreign Affair brings Ukraine into disrepute

In December 2006, Foreign Affairs Minister, Borys Tarasyuk committed the mortal sin of mixing politics with diplomacy. It backfired big time. Borys Tarasyuck’s petty actions brought not only himself, the Office of the President and Ukraine’s Foreign Affairs Ministry into disrepute but it also refected poorly on Ukraine as a whole. Needless to say the Parliament was not impressed.

The Parliament considered disciplinary action, and a motion of no-confidence in the Minister was passed by no less then 2/3rds majority of the elected Parliament. Tarasyuk’s Ministerial career was over. Well established convention has it that a Minister, a member of the executive council, must resign or face the sack if they lose the confidence of the legislative parliament.

Tarasyuk’s claimed he was illegally dismissed and sort to fight it out in the courts. The president Viktor Yushchenko, offered support to his friend and ally but in doing so the president was tarnishing the office of the president itself.

The parliament showed no signes of backing down from its earlier opinion. And once again Ukraine and the Office of the president were facing yet again another potential constitutional crisis.

Tarasyuk managed to buy a ruling of a lower court but that was soon overturned on appeal. He had no legs to stand on. The parliaments right to dismiss the Minister would drag out even longer if the matter was allowed to proceed to a higher court and the chances they would not win any further appeal was very slim indeed.

International relations was at an all time low with Foriegn Government’s unable to determine who represented and could speak for Ukraine. The Foriegn Minister’s standing had evaporated and it was begining to seriously effect Yushchenko’s standing also.

To make matters worst the issue of ministerial responsibility and accountability was the subject of debate as Ukraine’s parliament considered and passed a law governing the executive council and Cabinet Ministers. The Law on Cabinet of Ministers made it clear that any minister that has lost the confidence of the parliament had to resign. The proposed law was supported by over 2/3rds majority of the Parliament and as such overrode the earlier veto enforced by the president
The scandal that resulted form the former Ministers action seriously tarnished, both domestically and internationaly, the Offidce of the President .

Another blow to the Our Ukraine camp and a win for the government.

Chest beating as the President flexes his mussel.

The President took the sacking of his nominated Minister personally and considered it to be a direct challenge of his authority and power. Under Ukraine’s current constitutional arrangements the President has the right to nominate and appoint Ukraine’s Foriegn Affairs and defence Ministers.

The situation where opposing political ideology/parties can appoint members of the executive was always going to create a potential conflict and the actions of Borys Tarasyuk surely created conflict. Tarasyuk having been dismissed by the parliament tried to attend cabinet meetings but his presence and right to participate in Ministerial meetings was challenged. Creating deeper resentment and animosity between the executive branch and the Office of the President.

In what was seen as an act of spite by many, the President decide to flex his mussel and veto the governments budget. Not once but on multiple occasions.

Many western democracies place strict limitations on the head of state and their right to block supply/money bills but no such limitations were in place in Ukriane.

The budget had to be passed and agreed to by the President before the end of the year. Failure to secure agreement on the budget would have created another this time more serious constitutional crisis in that it had the potential to undermine economic confidence in Ukraine.

If the budget was not passed by the new year every day that passed Ukraine would have suffered. No capital works programmes could continue and private contractors would be unsure, as to when or if, they would get paid. Ukraine would have come to a complete standstill. Public servants would continue to be paid as recurrent funding under the terms of the then existing budget coudl continue but no new expenditure or capital works could be authorised.

For a while there it looked like the President was going to manufacture another constitutional crises, one that could result in the elected parliament being prematurely dismissed and forced back to the polls less then six months after iots formation.

Had this stand-off been allowed to developed and the parliament dismissed as a result Ukraine would have potential slide into political meltdown, economically and socially.

Thankfully the drought broke and the Government agreed to some minor amendments and the presidnet agreed to the passing of the budget.

Yulia Tymoshenko opposition bloc sided with the President’s our Ukraine party preventing the possibility of obtaining a 2/3rd statutory majority required to override the President right of veto.

The threat of blocking supply by the President was reckless and irresponsible.

Ukraine’s Business community were not impressed and there was growing pressure from the business community and within Our Ukraine itself to see this matter resolved sooner rather then later. Political power games of this sort served no one interest.

Thankfully the drought broke and the Government agreed to some minor amendments and the president agreed to the passing of the budget.

Rule of Law adopted

The government and the parliament, concerned about the growing conflict and lack of rules and laws governing the relationships between it’s democratic institutions has embarked on considering and adopting a serious of regulatory laws to address the current situation. One such law being the law on the Cabinet of Minsters which was designed to regulate and govern the executive government and its relationship with the parliament and president.

The proposed laws seek to install the rule of law as opposed to presidential decree and lack of established convention. The Law on cabinet of Minsters provides the necessary check and balances that are commonly in place in most western parliamentary democracies. The proposed law was not perfect but it did meet acceptable standards and was reviewed by the Venice Commission in October last year. Some of the Venice commission’s comments and recommendations have been adopted in the latest draft law.

The government has also recently indicated that they are prepared to consider further amendments based on comments make by the president but they wanted to see the law as it stood in place as soon as possible.

The Law on the Cabinet of Ministers is one of a series of laws that seeks to regulate government and codify protocols. Other such laws that are under consideration include the Law on the Opposition, its rights and obligation. The law on the Office of the President, which has yet to be fully debated. and the Law of Imperatives which is controversial and currently under consideration.

An indication of support for the passing of these awls has been given by Yulia Tymoshenko’s bloc which if her promise of support holds will see any attempt by the president to veto the laws overridden.

The president considers the Law on the Cabinet of Minsters to be unconstitutional and has indicated that he will exercise his right to have the new law referred to the constructional court of consideration and review.

Ukraine’s constitutional court a house of review.

The constitutional court has not yet met or considered any issues of significance since its formation late last year.

There are a number of issues of importance currently before the Ukraine’s Constitutional Court including a motion by Yulia Tymoshenko to seek to overturn the 2006 constitutional amendments and Ukraine’s transition from a Presidential dictatorship to a Parliamentary democracy.

Yulia’s proposal is seen as an attempt to have a second bite of the cherry and if the court rules in her favour the parliament would face re-election.

If only it was as simple as that. Her motion before the courts could very well open a Pandora’s box and not deliver the result Yulia hopes to achieve.

Seeking reform of the current constitution is seen as the more preferable way forward and less divisive. It is understood that the President is of this opinion also but he has not made his position clear and their does not yet seem to be any common consensus emerging.

Many political watches are waiting eagerly to see which way and how the constitutional court will rule.

Foreign Minister falls on his sword.

Borys Tarasyuck lost on appeal his challenge against his sacking and the same day that the parliament promulgated the law on the Cabinet and Ministers the president met with the ill fated Minister and advised him that his position was untenable and that he had to resign. the Minister faced with the inevitability and the growing amount of concern over Ukraine’s Foreign relationship the Minster tendered his resignation putting an end to another chapter of conflict and division between Ukraine’s government and it’s Head of State.

Parliament versus President

Whilst Viktor Yuschenko and Our Ukraine supporters advocate a return to Presidential rule one might begin to wonder why, given he claims to be pro-west which by implication assumes falsely that his opponents are not pro-west, the west has not spoken out more to support him. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that Europe does not support or like Presidential systems. A quick look at the EU political map shows you that all but one, Greek Cyprus, are Parliamentary democracies not Presidential dictatorships. Parliamentary democracy is strong in the EU and of course EU members of parliament are not going to come out and support Yuschenko or Our Ukraine’s bid to instill Presidential power. Ukraine has just began its transition towards a democratic Parliamentary system and every one agreed that the March 2006 parliamentary election were open and fair. To openly take sides on this issue would put EU countries at odds with their own philosophy. Ukraine is just going to have to work this one through. The only country in the EU that maintains a resemblance of a parliamentary-presidential system if France and eve then the President has a guideing father elder statesman like role. France is also facing fresh Presidential election soon and many are asking questions as to the role of the President as a change in power is on the horizon.

The European Union itself, membership to which Ukraine including Our Ukraine aspire, is governed not by a President but by Parliamentary rule.

It would be difficualt if not out right impossible for European Western countries to be advocating support for one political party over another let alone supporting power to be handed back to the President. To do so would undermine the European Union itself.

The only suport and argment for a Presidential system is coming from the United States and they are not apart of the European Union and Ukraine has not yet proposed becomming the 52nd State.

Democratic Parliamentary system provide more checks and balances then teh former presidentiaol rule. The executive minsiterial governement is accounatble first and foremost to the elected Parlaimentary representative. They are limited and governed by the terms of the constituion and rule of law.TheParliament provides a daily wtaching brief and monitoring of the governement. The President as head of state also acts as a watchdog with significant right of veto powers. Like that of the executive gvedrnment the President should excersise his authority to override Parliament sparingly and inaccordance with the limitations and authority of guiding law and regulations. Any abuse of that authority undermines the Office of the President bring both the Office and the Country into disreput. Under Ukraine’s consitution Paraliament has the right with a 2/3rds staturtory majority vote can override the President’s right of veto.

This is a very powerful check and balance and one that is in the President’s favour. Obtaining 2/3rds majporty of a proportional representatoive body is very difficault indeed. A 2/3rds majority of Ukraine’s Parliament also has the authority to amend Ukraines constitution.

Under the former Presidential system their was no day to day checks and balances in the executive government which was appointed solely by the President. Parliament has now move from being a reavctive to proactive body where responsibility for governance is in the hands of the legislators.

Changing Constitutions

Ukraine is a new democracy it had only recently adopted a democratic parliamentary system. All of the former eastern European countries that are now members of the European Union and have been under parliamentary system for some years. Countries such as cri-Croatia have also just made the transition from a presidential decree to a system of parliamentary democracy.

The current Presidential-Parliamentary system is not working, there are too many grey areas in Ukraine’s legal structure and there is a clear need for review.

Yulia Tymoshenko’s challenge against the 2006 constitutional reform will, if successful, throw Ukraine into serious political turmoil a could set back democratic reform for many years to come.

The first question Ukraine needs to decide is what type of system will it adopt.
Will it fall in line with most other European countries and adopt a full parliamentary system or will it revert back to a system of presidential decree.

If commonsense prevails Ukraine will opt for a true parliamentary system and all parties will work to ensure its success.

Under the current constitutional provision 2/3rds of the elected parliament can approve changes to Ukraine’s constitution. The constitution can also be amended by referendum but as recent experience shows in France it would be almost if not absolutely impossible to secure agreement for consitutional change without substantial support from the majority of political parties. Without a broad consensus any public referendum would face defeat.

So Ukraine faces a tough period of negotiation in seeking meaningful and constitutional reform. Given the extent of bitterness and acromania relationships between the various political groups it is hard to see any real effective and worthwhile compromise let alone agreement on the type of political system Ukraine should adopt. all parties just come together and find a common direction unless they can nothing will be resolved.

Ukraine is expected to hold its next round of elections in 2009 when the Office of the President becomes vacant.

Based on the current standing in public opinion polls Viktor Yushchenko is unlikely to be re-elected to a second term of office.

Faced with this reality and the prospect of losing control of the presidency Our Ukraine might opt to support a full parliamentary model with an agreement that with the adoption of a new constitution both the Head of State and the parliament would face re-election together.

A similar proposal for concurrent elections is underway in Georgia and if adopted in Ukraine could be the ice breaker and the beginning of a new realignment. But that is hopeful thinking.

The need for further electoral reform

In addition to constitutional reform the other issue Ukraine needs to consider further is electoral reform.

22% of Ukrainians,who supported political parties that failed to secure the 3% threshold, were effectively disenfranchised during the March 206 Parliamentary elections they were denied a say in who will represent them and as such who has the right to govern Ukraine. .

Preferential voting

If Ukraine adopted a system of preferential voting where voters had the right to indicate, in order of preference, which party they support those that voted for minor parties that fail to obtain the required threshold quota could have their vote recounted to determine who their vote should be allocated to. The adoption of a preferential voting system would allow supporters of minor parties to be taken into consideration and not discarded.

Presidential Elections

The adoption of a preferential ballot would also save hundreds of millions of dollars and avoid the need for multiple presidential ballots. Only one ballot is required. Voters indicate in order of preference (1,2,3 etc) their candidates of choice. If no single candidate has 50% or more votes then the candidate with the lowest vote is excluded and their votes redistributed according to the voters nominated preference. This process continues until one candidate has 50% or more votes.

The result of the election is similar to the two-round system but only requires one ballot. A direct saving in costs and a further saving in indirect costs arising from any political uncertainly that may occur between the two ballots.

Establishment of regional electorates.

Another option that is worthy of consideration is the creation of a number of local regional electorates. Each electorate returning nine or more members of parliament based on a proportional representation election. Each electorate would be equal in number within a 5-10% variance and the boundaries determined by a independent judicial committee. Results of an electorate that returns nine members of parliament would be determined on a 10% quota thus avoiding the need for an minimum artificial quota. the adoption of preferential voting as outline above would ensure that voters were not unfairly disenfranchised.

The establishment of local representation would focus community attention on the candidates and allow for more effective local campaigning and representation. Detailed analysis of the March parliamentary elections results would provide a clear indication of the likely outcome of localised electorate model. certain assumptions will need to be made as to the likely preferential distribution of minor parties candidates.

Future Politics

The future of Ukraine does not lie with this parliament but the parliaments that will follow.

The generation that will follow the current generation is very impressive indeed they will certainly change the outlook of Ukraine when they are in power. Already the younger generation think different to the older generation, their aspirations and awareness of alternatives is considerable. they are the ones that will make the most change.

It is important that this generation and the current parliament puts aside power games and begin to lays down the foundations stone and building blocks for the next generation, a design based on a true democratic representative model. Any consideration of revised political system must not be based on desired or expected outcomes for any one individual or political party but based on sound, fair and democratic principles.

Yanukovych: It is necessary to improve Constitution
The Prime Minister of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych stresses that it is necessary to improve the regulations of the Constitution. The PM stated while addressing intelligentsia of Lviv region, “Cabinet press office” informed.

“We consider that improvement of the present Constitution is a process we’ll pass within the next few years”, Viktor Yanukovych said. According to the Prime Minister, it is difficult today to appraise those mistakes which, probably, have been made while amending the Constitution within the framework of the political reform.

During the meeting the Head of Government noted that executive system which had been formed after carrying out the political reform is the most efficient inasmuch as gives an opportunity the Government and Parliament to cooperate, work out national programs and adopt necessary laws.

Viktor Yanukovych stressed that President fills an appropriate place in this system. “This system of public administration is the most efficient and the world experience proves it. The stability of this system has been confirmed more than once”, the Head of Government


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