CVU roundtable: "Lessons from local elections in consolidated comunities 2017 and ways to improve electoral legislation"

On November 13, 2017 Committee of voters of Ukraine (CVU) held In Kyiv roundtable: "Lessons from local elections in consolidated comunities 2017 and ways to improve electoral legislation". CVU experts presented recommendations for improving the provisions of the Law On Local Elections. Some of them are designed to solve the traditional problems in the election (low-quality work of commission members, their frequent replacements, problems with papers), while others relate exclusively to the process of consolidation of communities in Ukraine. In particular, there is a need for legislative regulation of the organization of elections in consolidated communities formed from territory of different regions, as well as the proper financing of the first elections. The CVU urged the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine to resolve these issues before holding the next election in the consolidated communities scheduled on December 24, 2017.

During the event there were also discussed the provisions of the bill No. 3112-1 (Electoral Code) which was adopted by the Verkhovna Rada in its first reading on November 7, 2017. The CVU urged the leaders of parliamentary factions and groups to take personal control over the process of amending the bill in order to avoid excessive delays of its consideration. CVU also urged deputies not to abuse the right to vote for amendments in case they were not supported by the Main Committee and expressed readiness to provide expert support to all factions and groups of Verkhovna Rada in the process of elaboration of amendments to the Electoral Code.

CVU emphasizes the need for the Electoral Code to be adopted, which will allow unification of election procedures in different types of elections and will potentially contribute to the stabilization of electoral law. Regarding the improvement of the provisions of the Code, in the opinion of the CVU, draft law 3112-1 should provide for the total prohibition of political advertising in the inter-election and election period, as well as to establish effective mechanisms for combating bribery in the elections. During the round-table CVU experts presented advances and suggestions on these issue. In particular, regarding the regulation of indirect voters bribes on behalf of charitable organizations affiliated with parties and candidates. This requires to specify the notion of bribery in the Electoral Code. As for political advertising, its prohibition will allow to reduce the cost of elections in Ukraine and will promote the solid, meaningful (with good content) election campaign.