Photo: Andriy Krepkikh / UNDP Ukraine

19 November 2019, Kyiv – The new political situation in Ukraine is a promising environment for reform, members of the Steering Committee of the EU-UNDP Parliamentary Reform Project declared at a meeting to approve the workplan of the Parliamentary Reform Office on 19 November.

The aim of the office is to strengthen the activities of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine to make the Ukrainian parliament more effective, accountable and transparent in the implementation of its constitutional functions.

The Head of Operations, Section 1, Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine Martin Klaucke noted that the Verkhovna Rada played a leading role in the implementation of reforms. The European Union is looking forward to cooperating under the project and to seeing transformations that will help the Verkhovna Rada Secretariat become more effective, Klaucke said.

UNDP Deputy Resident Representative to Ukraine Manal Fouani said the election of a new president and parliament, along with the appointment of a new government, represented a real opportunity for change.

“The time is right to progress on public administration reform. It is an opportune moment for the Parliament to expand its engagement with the citizens and improve its internal procedures through new technologies and methodologies,” Fouani said.

“The political situation in the country has changed completely since the project started in February, including the early elections and the new convocation of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine,” Fouani said.

“This has created new conditions for transformational change,” she said. “We are proud of the well-established cooperation with the Ukrainian parliament.”

Project Coordinator a.i. Olena Kulikovska presented the key achievements of the project since February 2019. The team has completed significant preparatory work – carrying out a series of assessments to identify the needs of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and its secretariat and, most importantly, to set up the Parliamentary Reform Office, which functions as an advisory group to the leadership of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and its secretariat.

Kulikovska said the office team is almost complete, and that it will start its activities within the next month.

The Head of the Parliamentary Reform Office Yevheniia Piddubna then presented to the Steering Committee members the office’s workplan until the end of 2020.

According to the plan, it is envisaged that an international company will soon carry out a functional audit of the Verkhovna Rada Secretariat and provide recommendations for improving its performance.

Experts from the Parliamentary Reform Office will assist in the development of an updated HR strategy, drafting a law on parliamentary public service, and developing of a concept for a parliamentary education programme, as well as helping introduce digital tools in the legislative process. The Parliamentary Reform Office will also be engaged in many other activities over the next 13 months.

The Head of the VRU Secretariat Viacheslav Shtuchnyi thanked the European Union and UNDP for their support for the Ukrainian parliament, and noted that the Secretariat’s leadership communicates daily with the Parliamentary Reform Office. Every matter that arises is addressed promptly, as the Secretariat is ready for, and open to, cooperation.

The Steering Committee members, comprising representatives of all three stakeholders – the EU Delegation to Ukraine, UNDP Ukraine and the Verkhovna Rada – unanimously approved the workplan of the Parliamentary Reform Office.

For reference:

The Parliamentary Reform Project, funded by the European Union and implemented by United Nations Development Programme, consists of the following components:

Component 1, #Rada4Reforms, aimed at strengthening parliament’s role in the overall reform process, with an emphasis on improving the legislative process and parliamentary oversight.

Component 2, #RadaPro, provides support for a professional upgrade of the VRU Secretariat by finalizing and implementing the strategic development plan and the integrated development of human resources.

Component 3, #Transparent&Service-OrientedRada, aims at enhancing transparency, accountability and communication between parliament and citizens through the use of new communication technologies, civic education, and citizen engagement.

Contacts for media:

Mykola Yabchenko, Communication and Knowledge Management Associate, EU-UNDP Parliamentary Reform Project, mykola.yabchenko@undp.org, +380 67 290 5501.

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