President Volodymyr Zelenskyy chaired an urgent closed-door session of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine on urgent measures to be taken by the state after the Constitutional Court ruled that certain provisions of the Law on Prevention of Corruption and Article 366-1 of the Criminal Code were unconstitutional.
The Head of State highlighted the threats posed by such a decision to the country and its national security.
"We will not have money, we will not have support, agreed projects and the support of the World Bank will be canceled. We will have a big hole in the budget. And most importantly, we do not understand what to expect from the Constitutional Court tomorrow or the day after tomorrow," Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
"I am not sure that the judges of the Constitutional Court decided to do what they did yesterday themselves. We need to take quick yet adequate steps. At the legislative level - I am sure it is fair - to immediately register the bill in the Verkhovna Rada, which provides for the restoration of the rectitude of the constitutional judiciary in Ukraine," the President noted.
Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council Oleksiy Danilov noted that a number of recent events related to the decision of the CCU give reason to believe that there is a holistic plan against the foundations of Ukrainian statehood. In particular, the Court is an "icebreaker" of our country's achievements on the path to European and Euro-Atlantic integration, destroying anticorruption legislation.
He recalled that, in addition to the latest decision, the Constitutional Court in February 2019 repealed the law on illicit enrichment. As a result, law enforcement officers closed high-profile criminal proceedings, the effectiveness on which is demanded from the authorities by society.
"Such actions of the Court have a number of not just negative, but catastrophic consequences in both the domestic and foreign policy dimensions of our country. The atmosphere of Ukraine's relations with the European Union, with our Euro-Atlantic community is changing dramatically," he said.
Oleksiy Danilov also pointed out that the scandalous decision was made by the Court immediately after the end of the local elections, which in themselves contain very difficult challenges to national security in terms of decentralization. According to him, such steps and their sequence testify to the purposefulness and thoughtfulness of anti-state actions.
NACP Chairman Oleksandr Novikov noted that the CCU had destroyed the entire anticorruption system, pushing it back in 1991.
"Everything that was built during the years of Ukraine's independence was dismantled by the decision of the CCU. This was contrary to the position of Ukrainian citizens, 91% of whom consider corruption a serious problem for Ukrainians," he said, adding that the current government demonstrates zero tolerance for corruption and the Anticorruption Strategy was developed and planned to be submitted to the Verkhovna Rada.
According to him, after the decision of the Constitutional Court, the NACP is actually transformed into a "body for concealing information about public figures".
The President's representative in the Constitutional Court Fedir Venislavsky stressed that the decision of the CCU was made with many violations, and the judges themselves had a conflict of interest.
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba said that the decision of the CCU poses a number of threats to the country in the foreign policy sphere, as the fight against corruption in Ukraine has been and remains one of the key issues on the agenda in dialogue with reliable partners. These are the European Union, the United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea and others.
"All of them, to one degree or another, have invested in the creation of anticorruption infrastructure in Ukraine - their resources, their capabilities. And that is why they also feel responsible for the continuation of its existence," he said.
The Minister assured: if Ukraine does not overcome the consequences of the problem that has arisen, it will continue to systematically negatively affect Ukraine's relations with these partners.
As a result of the meeting, a decision was made, in particular, to take urgent measures by the Cabinet of Ministers on the temporary procedure for maintaining the Unified State Register of declarations of persons authorized to perform state or local government functions, as well as a special inspection. Volodymyr Zelenskyy offered to urgently draft a bill and submit it to the Verkhovna Rada as urgent to restore trust in the constitutional judiciary. It was also decided to intensify the activities of the Commission for Legal Reform under the President of Ukraine and speed up the submission of proposals for judicial reform.
Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal noted that work on the bill is already underway in cooperation with the Office of the President. It was decided to hold an urgent meeting of the government in the Office of the President.