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Internal Reform & Capacity Building for the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine

March 1, 2016

Following on from yesterday’s entry and the paragraph that predicted unaltered whole-sale acceptance of the EU Mission conclusions and recommendations of both bringing the Verkhovna Rada into the current millennium by way of internal bureaucracy, functionality and simple civility, it goes without saying that the conclusions and recommendations were indeed whole-sale accepted by the Ukrainian delegation.

The report and roadmap in English and in Ukrainian are now available for public perusal.

The report is indeed thorough as is to be expected, and for those that were previously unaware of the onerous and misused legislative procedures and protocols endured by the Ukrainian constituency and parliamentarians alike for decades, the tedious, discombobulated and abused systemic faults are laid bare in easy to understand prose.

The conclusions are focused and fair, and the recommendations both sensible and reasonable.  There is no ambiguity with identifying what is wrong and what the desired goals are when applying remedies.

Inference about how to get from one entirely dysfunctional place to another far more workable place is also liberally sprinkled within the text.  All very good!

Unfortunately “inference” about how to get from A to B with the Ukrainian political class is never clear nor specific enough to avoid discord over even the most simple of issues.  Thus how much of the content and how swiftly any of it becomes a reality remains to be seen, and whatever is actually realised then faces the ever-present Ukrainian problem – implementation and subsequent enforcement to have any meaningful and/or lasting effect.

As Verkhovna Rada Speaker Volodymyr Groisman stated the day prior to the report/roadmap presentation – ““The reforms should start with us, the parliament, and with the cabinet of ministers in order to change Ukraine and take on challenges.”  

Quite so, but the adoption and implementation of the roadmap, in full or in part, will probably not be accompanied by the change in individual morality or group ethic among Ukrainian parliamentarians that is required to provide the spirit and integrity underpinning any reformed administrative and bureaucratic system.  Far too many will continue to seek to buck and circumvent the system for their own feckless and nefarious ends until the political parties cleanse their party ranks of the odious, nefarious and inglorious via party lists that ensure “vested interests” survive.

Having failed to do cleanse party lists given the opportunity immediately following events of early 2014, there is thus now insufficient political will/votes to move to entirely open party lists allowing the public the opportunity to cleanse them at the ballot box.  It can therefore be expected that as much effort will be put into achieving roadmaps to circumvent any roadmap by the odious, nefarious and inglorious, as will be put into the now published European Parliament roadmap by the moral and ethical.

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Nevertheless, although the reformation of the Verkhovna Rada will be neither smooth, nor linear, nor as timely as it could and should be, every arduous step taken that constrains, contains and reduces the current misuse of an onerous system and brings the working practices into the modern era will surely be one in the right direction – and those arduous steps will eventually be taken, one at a time, as long as the European Parliament remains actively engaged in the process in the years ahead.

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