Reform of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine
Way Forward
Agency for Legislative Initiatives has analyzed the progress of the parliamentary reform
The presentation of the Roadmap on Internal Reform and Institutional Capacity Building for the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine by the European Parliament's Needs Assessment Mission at the end of February 2016 marked the beginning of a comprehensive reform of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.
3
years
of reform

41.8%
of the Roadmap
implemented
0
draft laws related to the reform have been adopted as a whole
Why does the parliamentary reform matter?
It is the part of the reform of the decision-making system along with the public administration reform
Any other reforms as well as effective public policy making and implementation depend on the quality and transparent work of the only legislative body of Ukraine
Verkhovna Rada enjoys the least trust from citizens among public institutions (only 1,1% trust completely)
Immediate steps of the parliamentary reform to be taken
1
Establishment of a single parliamentary reform coordination center
Such centre should be responsible for planning, coordinating and implementing measures aimed to realize parliamentary reform both in the framework of the Roadmap and taking into account the current challenges and state of the development of parliamentarism and digital technologies. In addition, the coordination centre should become a platform aimed at coordination of the positions of parliamentary political forces. The staff of the coordination centre should consist of experts in the legislative process, policy analysis, public administration, civil service. The key to efficiency of the coordination center is professionalism and political impartiality.
Stakeholders: Chairperson of the VRU, First Deputy Chairperson of the VRU, MP`s - members of the Working Group on parliamentary reform.
2
Systematic work on the implementation of the recommendations – current tasks should not interfere with the work on the reform
Parliamentary reform agenda should be established with specific measures and timelines. It is necessary to develop and adopt the agenda with realistic timeframes and more relevant tasks, because deadlines of the Roadmap have long been missed and the document itself and its particular recommendations have lost their relevance in the last three years. Such an agenda should make it impossible to postpone the parliamentary reform under the pressure of day-to-day tasks and challenges.
Stakeholders: Chairperson of the VRU, First Deputy Chairperson of the VRU, MP`s - members of the Working Group on parliamentary reform.
3
Approval of the "end-to-end" legislative process concept
This is the first and most important of the 52 Roadmap recommendations. Such a concept should be coordinated among all Stakeholders of the legislative process and correlate with the current public administration reform. The concept should reflect the target-oriented system for the development and adoption of policy decisions, as well as include the key stages of the implementation of the reform and outline the effective ways of implementing certain components of the reform in order to ensure the coherence of efforts of all Stakeholders of the legislative initiative.
Stakeholders: VRU leadership, MP`s - members of the Working Group on parliamentary reform, MP`s – heads of parliamentary factions and groups, Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine (SCMU), Administration of the President of Ukraine, representatives of the structural units of the VRU Secretariat and committee secretariats.
4
Ensuring effective communication between all stakeholders
It is necessary to ensure proper communication between the representatives of parliamentary factions and groups in the dialogue platforms (Working Group on Parliamentary Reform, Jean Monnet Dialogue Platform) - on the one hand, and the political leadership of the relevant factions and groups and their ordinary members on the other. In addition, parliamentary reform cannot be fully implemented without coordination with representatives of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine responsible for the implementation of the public administration reform. Regular meetings (once a month) in different formats and involving different stakeholders, depending on a specific issue, should be introduced. The coordination center should provide key stakeholders both within and outside the Parliament, as well as civil society representatives, with information on the state of the parliamentary reform. Stakeholders: The political leadership of the Verkhovna Rada, MP's – members of the Working Group on parliamentary reform, MP's – heads of parliamentary factions and groups, Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine (SCMU), representatives of structural units of the VRU Secretariat and committee secretariats, Administration of the President of Ukraine, representatives of international technical assistance projects.
5
Adopt the Rules of Procedure of the Verkhovna Rada in accordance with the Constitution of Ukraine
On 21 February 2014, the Verkhovna Rada resumed the operation of certain provisions of the Constitution of Ukraine reverting the form of government to the parliamentary-presidential. Nevertheless, the Rules of Procedure of the Verkhovna Rada have never been brought into accordance with the restored version of the Constitution, which will result in conflicts of law during the parliamentary legislative work.
Stakeholders: MP's - members of the parliamentary coalition, MP's - heads of parliamentary factions and groups, Committee on the Regulations and organization of work of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.
6
Development and Adoption of the Law "On Civil Service in the Verkhovna Rada Apparatus"
The Law of Ukraine "On Civil Service" (2015) does not take into account the specifics of the work of civil servants in the Parliament. However, these specifics can significantly affect the quality and effectiveness of civil servants because of possible political influence of MPs whose activities civil servants are intended to support and provide. Ensuring the independence of civil servants from political influence should be the basis for the development of modern parliamentary service in Ukraine.
Stakeholders: leadership of the VRU Secretariat, representatives of the structural units of the VRU Secretariat and committee secretariats, political leadership of the VRU, MPs – members of the Working Group on parliamentary reform.
7
Adoption of the parliamentary code of conduct
Several Roadmap recommendations are devoted precisely to the ethical issues and problems of MPs' adherence to the Parliamentary Rules of Procedure. Certainly, the lack of clear ethical guidelines and effective sanction system affects the "non-parliamentary" behavior of MPs both inside and outside of the Parliament. Such situation affects the citizens' perception of the Verkhovna Rada and contributes to low level of trust in the parliament. The adoption of a code of conduct will bring the Verkhovna Rada closer to international best practices of parliamentarism. Currently, due to the efforts of CSOs representatives and individual MPs a model structure of the code of conduct for the Ukrainian parliamentarians was developed.
Stakeholders: MP`s - members of the parliamentary coalition, MP`s - heads of parliamentary factions and groups, Committee on Rules and Organization of Work of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, Committee on the Prevention and Counteraction of Corruption.
Report by the Agency for Legislative Initiatives
Read the full assessment of the progress of the parliamentary reform
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Organizations that joined
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