November 18, 2017

Today's issue of anticorruption news covers:

  • NACP whistleblower revealing corruption in the Agency
  • selections results of the State Bureau of Investigations management 
  • new Supreme Court judges having taken the oath: dubious finalists appointed 
  • MPs trying to dismiss the head of Rada Anticorruption committee
  • Ukraine investigators fearing corruption cases could get buried
  • NABU having detained eighth participant of funds embezzlement of Yatseniuk's "Wall" project

Whistleblower: Results of E-Declarations Verification Are Falsified By NACP Management

Hanna Solomatina, the head of the department of financial control and monitoring of officials' lifestyles of the National Agency for Corruption Prevention reveals corruption in the Agency and boldly speaks about power abuse. She reports that she was invited to the Presidential Administration for a meeting with NACP's curator, who had suggested that any decision drafts prepared by her department should be brought for his approval. Solomatina refused.

She filed the materials to PGO, but they were returned back to NACP, so she decided to appeal to NABU. On November 17 Yuriy Lutsenko transferred the investigative jurisdiction of this case from NABU to the Security Service (SBU).

Close attention to this case is crucial as it is NACP itself that is tasked by the legislation with ensuring protection of whistleblowers. In the meantime, NACP has filed a lawsuit against Solomatina and refuses to comment on the case "before the judgement is passed". 

More details about other recent scandals at the NACP. 


Who Will Lead The State Bureau of Investigations?

After 20,5 months of work on November 16, 2017 the selection panel unanimously chose Roman Truba as the director of the State Bureau of Investigations (SBI) and Olga Varchenko (on the photo) as the first deputy director. With 6 out of 9 votes the panel selected Oleksandr Buryak as the deputy director. 

The SBI will be extremely powerful, as it takes over investigations functions from the PGO. It becomes the main investigative agency regarding crimes committed by law enforcement officers, high-ranking officials, and judges – except corruption crimes, which fall under the NABU jurisdiction. Moreover, the SBI has powers to investigate criminal offences of NABU and SAPO officials.

All three candidates selected for the posts of the SBI management are old guards from the prosecutor’s system, e.g. Varchenko is acting head of the so-called "Kononenko-Granovskyi" department at the PGO. More details.

New Supreme Court Judges Have Taken The Oath

On November 11, 2017, 113 future judges of the new Supreme Court took the oath. 

25 of them do not meet integrity criteria. They either possess unjustified assets, were engaged in cases recognized as political persecution or violated human rights as confirmed by the European Court of Human Rights. More details


MPs Trying To Dismiss Anticorruption Committee Chair Yehor Sobolyev

Poroshenko's Block and Narodnyi Front MPs are collecting signatures for resignation of Yehor Soboliev for allegedly not being able to organise committee's work. They seek for a pretext to pass a no-confidence motion against Sobolyev. MPs boycott the work of the committee - they often fail even to vote for approval of the agenda, as during the hearings on November 15. 
Sobolyev proved to be one of the most effective and sincere drivers of anticorruption reform in the Parliament, he protects the independence of NABU and opposed appointment of a loyal auditor, advocates for the establishment of the anticorruption court. Should he be dismissed, the committee will become absolutely controllable by the majority with almost no further opportunities for real reforms to be adopted and rollbacks to be prevented. 

Ukraine Investigators Fear Corruption Cases Could Get Buried

Ukrainian investigators fear corruption probes could get buried because the national anti-corruption bureau will soon be flooded by thousands of old cases and recently passed legislation could further hobble their work. More details

Yatseniuk's "Wall": NABU Having Detained 8th Participant of Funds Embezzlement Scheme

On November 15, 2017, NABU and SAPO conducted a series of searches which resulted in detaining a person allegedly involved in a corruption scheme. The scheme was aimed at embezzlement of the state funds allocated for engineering of the Ukrainian-Russian state border - the so-called "Wall" project. More details.