UKRAINE’S FLEDGLING DEMOCRACY IN CHRONIC NEED OF HELP SAYS PEOPLE FIRST

22.06.10


The democracy foundation ‘People First’ has raised concerns over the erosion of democratic principles in Ukraine. In particular it has expressed growing alarm over the deterioration of media freedoms, increased levels of corruption, a weak judicial system and moves to raise the percentage level parties need to enter parliament from 3% to 7%. The latter proposal could potentially disenfranchise millions of voters.

People First, which is a non-political organisation, believes that the Ukrainian government should establish a programme which will safeguard fundamental democratic principles, reform the present judicial system and tackle corruption.  It says that there could be a return to street protests and acts of civil disobedience if further deteriorations are left unchecked.

People First has noted the findings of a recent survey carried out by the European Business Association in Ukraine which perceived a continuing increase in corruption during the past three months. 

“The danger is that the cost of doing real business is rapidly reaching levels that are unacceptable to both domestic and foreign investors,” said Victor Tkachuk, Chief Executive of People First Foundation. “Ukraine’s economic and social development is incumbent upon it safeguarding the democratic principles enshrined in the Constitution. We call upon the government to form a programme to protect these essential freedoms and for parties of all political persuasions to be vigilant and work in a constructive manner.”

In autumn 2010, People First will endeavour to involve the Ukrainians to help shape the country’s democratic development through a series of national Internet and postal referenda. It will provide the public with an opportunity to say what they want from their elected leaders. The results will be used to create a ‘People’s Charter’ which will form the basis for further dialogue with the president, government, political parties and NGOs.



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