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Ukraine's corruption prevention agency opens asset declaration registry

by Rachel Amran and The Kyiv Independent news desk December 11, 2023 1:03 AM 2 min read
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Ukraine's National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) opened 24-hour access to the Unified State Register of Declarations of persons authorized to perform the functions of the state or local self-government. The Register reportedly allows Ukrainians to submit and review property declarations of public servants.

Back in September, the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament, passed a bill to restore the requirement for top officials to declare their assets, an anti-corruption measure central to talks on Ukraine's accession to the European Union.

However, the Rada made several amendments, one of which meant that there would be no public access to officials' asset declarations for one more year, and only law enforcement agencies would be able to check them. The amendments sparked widespread criticism among Ukrainian anti-corruption activists.

Members of the European Parliament appealed to Zelensky to veto the bill, fearing it would undermine trust in reforms. A petition launched on Sept. 6 asked the president to demand the Rada change the law so that asset declarations become publicly accessible.

President Zelensky eventually vetoed the controversial bill on Sept. 12. Zelensky later signed a new version of the law on Oct. 10, almost a month later, to resume asset declarations for officials and immediately make them publicly accessible.

Earlier today, the NACP finally announced the opening of a publicly accessible Register.

The system of compulsory asset declarations was originally instituted as part of the country's fight against corruption following the 2014 EuroMaidan Revolution. All declarations were open to the public, a level of transparency especially important for journalists and civil society.

At the start of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, the requirement for submitting e-declarations was suspended and public access to the declarations was shut down. Officials have still been able to submit them on a voluntary basis.

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