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MP’s removal of immunity vote in July.

May 24, 2012

On 4th May I mentioned a desperately needed proposal to remove MPs absolute immunity from prosecution in Ukraine.  Since that time it has been rather quite on this subject.  Have the RADA turkey’s decided not to vote for Christmas after all?

Seemingly the proposal is still in the bureaucratic works at the RADA but will be going to a vote, probably in early  July.

At present the draft bill is undergoing consultation and proposals and amendments are welcomed until 7 June.  The reason this takes so long is any proposal or amendment to the draft requires 150 signatures from MPs, thus one assumes, showing there is reasonable support to consider any proposal or amendment for inclusion.

A parliamentary committee then goes through the proposals and amendments to the draft bill (which gained the support of 150+ MP’s) over the course of the following month and it is then submitted to the RADA for vote.

Therefore my best guess, given the cut off date for proposals and amendments being 7 June, the bill will actually go to the RADA for voting sometime between 5th – 10th July.

As yet there is very little point in commenting upon just how much immunity and in what circumstances the RADA turkey’s will vote to remove from themselves.  It is unlikely that they will remove their immunity absolutely, and depending on what is stripped away and what is kept, that may be a reasonable thing to do if we consider issues such as Parliamentary Privilege in the UK that allows MPs to say exactly what they think free from the prospect of prosecution as long as it takes place within the parliament itself.

Unfortunately, we can expect more than Parliamentary Privilege immunity to remain I expect – but I hope to be surprised, just as I was surprised when the issue of removing immunity was seriously mentioned in the first place.

I know the current draft, prior to any proposals and amendments, does not propose the removal of immunity from the President or judges for example.

Whether that will change before the beginning of July remains to be seen, however even if it does not, any faltering step, any removal of immunity under whatever circumstances are eventually passed, it is a step in the right direction.

Of course nobody will be ecstatic with what does pass through the RADA (unless it is a carte blanch removal of immunity) but it would be rather foolish to dismiss any moves in the right direction simply because it does not reach perfection. – We are, after all, expecting turkey’s to welcome the coming of Christmas!

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