Zelensky's initiative: Key points of presidential bill on democracy

Author : News Agency

Source : 112 Ukraine

Today, the Ukrainian parliament might consider the President's initiative in the second reading
13:27, 1 December 2020

Open source

Verkhovna Rada has published the text of bill No. 3612 on democracy for the second reading, initiated by President Zelensky. According to the text of the bill, adopted during a referendum can be changed through an all-Ukrainian referendum not earlier than three years from the date of its adoption. And the results of the referendum should not be approved by any state body.

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A new all-Ukrainian referendum on issues that were not previously supported in an all-Ukrainian referendum might be held no earlier than one year after the announcement of the results of the corresponding all-Ukrainian referendum.

The law of Ukraine or some of its provisions, which have become invalid as a result of an all-Ukrainian referendum, cannot be adopted by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in the same wording within three years from the date of their loss of force.

The subject of the All-Ukrainian referendum may be questions about:

  • approval of amendments to Sections I (General Provisions), III (Elections. Referendum), XIII (Amendments to the Constitution) of the Constitution;
  • solving an issue of national importance;
  • approval of the law on the ratification of an international treaty providing for the change of the territory of Ukraine;
  • termination of the law of Ukraine or its individual provisions.

Related: Verkhovna Rada may consider bill on all-Ukrainian referendum at tomorrow’s session

At the same time, the following questions cannot be the subject of an all-Ukrainian referendum:

  • contradicting the provisions of the Constitution of Ukraine, generally recognized principles and norms of international law, enshrined in the first place by the General Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, and protocols thereto;
  • aimed at eliminating the independence of Ukraine, violating the state sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, creating a threat to the national security of Ukraine, inciting interethnic, racial, and religious enmity;
  • regarding bills on taxes, budget, amnesty;
  • attributed by the Constitution of Ukraine and the laws of Ukraine to the jurisdiction of law enforcement agencies, the prosecutor's office, or the court.

The document also expands the range of subjects of the referendum process, who are registered with the Central Election Commission as supporters or opponents of the issue of an all-Ukrainian referendum. These can be both political parties and public organizations, respectively registered with the Central Election Commission.

Voters, members of commissions for the All-Ukrainian referendum, official observers, the media and their employees, and other persons are prohibited from performing any actions or disclosing information that makes it possible to establish the content of the will of a particular voter. The law proposes the creation of automated information and analytical system to ensure electronic voting.

Each voter at a specific all-Ukrainian referendum can exercise the right to vote only once and only in one precinct from an all-Ukrainian referendum by submitting a ballot paper in paper form or by electronic voting in the manner prescribed by law.

Related: Ukrainian leader stages referendum show in late appeal to voters

In turn, the explanatory note notes that the most difficult thing in electronic voting is to technically ensure the protection of the personal data of voters and protect the systems for such voting from unauthorized interference.

Organization of an all-Ukrainian referendum

An All-Ukrainian referendum is held in a nationwide constituency according to an All-Ukrainian referendum, which includes the entire territory of Ukraine and a foreign constituency.

To prepare, organize and conduct an all-Ukrainian referendum, territorial constituencies are used, formed for the preparation, organization, and conduct of national elections and exist on a permanent basis.

The Central Election Commission, no later than on the second day after the start of the All-Ukrainian referendum process, shall post a list of the corresponding territorial constituencies from the All-Ukrainian referendum, indicating their numbers, borders, and centers on the official website of the Central Election Commission.

The foreign constituency from the all-Ukrainian referendum includes all foreign precincts formed by the Central Election Commission for the preparation and conduct of voting in the national elections and exist on a permanent basis.

Related: Ukrainian Parliament could pass draft law on national referendum in November, - Speaker

Television debates on the All-Ukrainian referendum

Television debates are organized at the expense of the state budget allocated for the preparation and conduct of the all-Ukrainian referendum and are held by the National Public Television and Radio Company of Ukraine on the last Friday before voting day on the public-political nationwide public television channel live between 19 hours and 22 hours with a duration of 120 minutes of continuous airtime. time. 

The sequence of providing the subjects of the All-Ukrainian referendum process with airtime during the televised debates is determined not later than seven days before the voting day, based on the results of the draw.

Television debates can also be broadcast free of charge on other broadcast channels.

Representatives of the All-Ukrainian referendum initiative group (in case of an All-Ukrainian referendum on a popular initiative), representatives of political parties and public organizations registered with the Central Election Commission as supporters or opponents of the All-Ukrainian referendum issue take part in them.

This law comes into force on the day following the day of its publication, except for some of its clauses.

Recall that the original text of this document was made public on the parliament's website on March 4, and then its public discussion began.

Related: Special status of Donbas unlikely to be considered at nation-wide referendum, - Parliament Speaker

On June 18, parliament supported it in the first reading with 252 votes.

On November 18, the Committee on the Organization of State Power supported the draft law on democracy through an all-Ukrainian referendum and recommended to the parliament to adopt it in the second reading.

First vice-speaker of the parliament Ruslan Stefanchuk said that the parliament could consider it on December 1.


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