What does the Constitution of Ukraine mean for us today? Is it just a well written document? Or maybe the keystone from which all Ukrainian legislation grows? Or is it simply an idea to which politicians always appeal?

According to recent polls, 47% of Ukrainian citizens have never read the Constitution. Just imagine – nearly half of Ukrainian people have not held the primary law of their country in their hands. Do not forget that a large proportion of people who have read the Constitution are students who were required to do so as part of their school program.

What do we celebrate on June 28?

When the Verkhovna Rada was in the process of urgently adopting the new Primary Law of the country that night 23 years ago, nobody could have known its fate. The document, developed over the course of several years and was tortuously adopted after arduous work, was at one time called one of the best constitutions in the world by the experts. Very soon, however, it turned out that our Constitution is not quite so perfect and that it could not ensure the harmonious development of Ukraine.

And thus it should be changed. Over and over. Rewrite and reorganize, with no less pain or torture for the state or all Ukrainians, let them have this document and they did not read it.

Following the changes to the Constitution in 2019 to align with the course for the EU and for NATO, it seemed that this surgical modification to the document would be the last for a long time. And yet … we are witnessing another spike in interest of the Basic Law. 

No, people did not rush en masse to purchase copies in bookshops and they do not cite articles of the Constitution on the streets, but they all talk about it. After all, the PR manager of the Primary Law became the Constitutional Court.

This institution has still made many controversial decisions, too. Specifically, the decision of the CCU in 2003 which determined that President Leonid Kuchma could run for a third term. Of course, the CCU reached its lowest point of public confidence in 2010, when ex-President Viktor Yanukovych began to use the CCU for his own interests and introduced a number of judges who were loyal only to him. The September 2010 decision to abolish the 2004 constitutional reforms marked not only a complete coup in the political system of Ukraine, but this decision also demonstrated the political bias of the CCU and challenged the ability of this body to actually ensure the supremacy of the Constitution of Ukraine.

Since then, the composition of the CCU has changed. Even today, however, three of the eighteen judges of the Constitutional Court are the same people who made decisions in 2010 including the head of the CCU.

Could this be considered the reason for the controversial decisions made by the CCU over the last six months? Or maybe it is about the very principle of the formation of the Constitutional Court, when 6 judges are appointed each by the President, the Verkhovna Rada, and the Council of Judges? Who knows. But over the last six months, we think about the Constitution and the CCU, and the decisions that sometimes violate Ukraine’s international obligations.

On the one hand, we saw the abolition of declarations for activists, on the other we witnessed the recognition of the article on “illegal enrichment” as unconstitutional and the elimination of the right of NABU to challenge such questionable agreements. Such decisions pushed our hard-earned anti-corruption reform radically backwards, leveling out valuable achievements. In the process, it destroyed a powerful partnership of two articles in the Criminal Code, those on illegal enrichment and the declaration of inaccurate information, directly caused 65 illegal cases to be closed after the effective work of NABU lawyers, and annulled 96 pending agreements totaling more than 6 billion UAH.

What about the Constitution? It still remains one of the best in the world. Only, apparently, we are not always the best for it.

No, people did not rush en masse to purchase copies in bookshops and they do not cite articles of the Constitution on the streets, but they all talk about it. After all, the PR manager of the Primary Law became the Constitutional Court.

Source: www.liga.net