The Venice Commission has published an updated opinion on the infamous draft law No. 7662, which the Verkhovna Rada adopted last Tuesday. The MPs manipulated the recommendations of the Venice Commission expressed in the opinion, so the Commission had to clarify it. In the new opinion, it emphasised two important points:
- It is necessary to include an additional seventh member under the international quota in the Advisory Group of Experts, which will check the candidates for the CCU. The adopted law provides for six members of the AGE - three independent experts delegated by international partners and three Ukrainian appointees, while no decision can be made without the latter's vote. The seventh independent expert will make it possible to level the political influence on the Advisory Group.
- Decisions of the Advisory Group of Experts should be binding. Under no circumstances can a candidate who has passed their evaluation with a negative result become a judge of the CCU.
It is noteworthy that this time at its plenary session, the Venice Commission did not support the urgent opinion prepared by the Bureau of the Venice Commission (its governing body) but approved a separate opinion. This is the second time in history that the Commission does not support an urgent opinion regarding Ukraine.
"This is an unequivocal signal that the Commission insists on European values and the principles of the rule of law, and no one will give Ukraine a free pass because of the war and other circumstances", commented Mykhailo Zhernakov, the Chair of the Board of DEJURE Foundation.
"Ukrainian authorities should heed the recommendations of the Venice Commission and change the adopted law", emphasises Halyna Chyzhyk, the expert of the Anti-Corruption Action Center. "The European Commission and the European Council will take into account the opinions of the Venice Commission when they make decisions about our future as a member of the EU".
"Now everything depends on President Zelensky - he should veto the draft law adopted by the MPs and return it to the Verkhovna Rada with all the necessary recommendations", says Kateryna Butko, the Head of Automaidan.
Earlier, the public had already called on the President to veto draft law No. 7662 because it threatens the political independence of the Constitutional Court and Ukrainian European integration.