Constitution: usurpation not an option

16.01.2015 | By Yehor Struzhkin

The return to the parliamentarypresidential republic was dictated by the extraordinary political events. 2006 2010 proved that the Constitution is conflictprone and underdeveloped. In fact, immediately after the Maidan it was regarded as an interim and forced deal.

Riding the wave of electoral success Petro Poroshenko instructed his confidants to develop a new version of the Basic Law, which at first glance gives more freedom to the parliament, the government and local authorities. But upon closer examination it became obvious that it gives the president additional levers of power (in law enforcement agencies and through the creation of the institution of representatives of the head of state in the regions).

The pause in the constitutional process was taken as a forced measure after more than twofold decline in presidents rating (or rather his political force) based on results of the parliamentary elections. Unsteadiness of the power coalition is a reason for concern, but there is definitely a positive point. Currently in Ukrainian parliament there are no political forces able to rewrite the Constitution exclusively as they see it.

And it is no secret that one of the main problems in Ukraine was not the imperfection of the Basic Law, but the failure to observe its provisions by the government. The examples are not far to seek: piano voting and failure to comply with the timely submission of the draft budget moved into practice of the postMaidan authorities. But its present composition very fragmented and crowded with domestic competition gives hope to tough mutual control. And from this point of view the squabbles inside the coalition appear in a different light the experience of the first month of the Radas work shows that some firsttimer MPs really try to enforce observation of provisions of the Constitution and parliamentary regulations.

However, in 2015 the majority of Ukrainian citizens will care about the prospect of introduction of amendments to the Constitution relating to curtailments in social commitments and standards. In this case there is hope not only for the parliament, but also for the Constitutional Court, for which it will be extremely difficult to pass a judgment ignoring the Article 22 of the Constitution, which does not tolerate restriction of existing rights and freedoms.

In general, the constitutional process in the coming year will be artificially slowed down but this will be okay if the government tries to fulfill the provisions of the Constitution including under the pressure of the public demand for real changes.

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