The Association of Ukrainian Cities addressed an open letter to Mykhailo Okhendovskyi, head of the Central Election Commission, in which it urges the CEC to hold a meeting until 17 August 2018 and appoint the first and additional local elections in the AHs, formed under the procedure, established by the special law, in accordance with the appeals of the oblast state administrations.
This will allow hromadas with about one million residents to complete the process of AH formation for their development and living standards’ increase.
The letter states that the Association of Ukrainian Cities is concerned about the situation caused by the adoption of Resolution No. 122 “On Applying to the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Legal Policy and Justice” by the Central Election Commission on 09 August 2018.
Referring to the decision of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine of 26 April 2018 regarding the recognition of the Law of Ukraine “On All-Ukrainian Referendum” as unconstitutional one, the CEC assumes that the mentioned Decision restores the effect of the Law of Ukraine “On All-Ukrainian and Local Referendums”, which has expired by virtue of the Law of Ukraine “On All-Ukrainian Referendum” and that in such a case decisions on hromadas’ amalgamation should be taken by means of a local referendum.
At the same time, the appointment of the first and additional local elections is expected by about 100 AHs that have undergone the entire amalgamation procedure envisaged by the special Law of Ukraine “OnVoluntary Amalgamation of Hromadas”. It was adopted in 2015, and therefore the norms of this Law have priority over the general norms of the Law of Ukraine “On All-Ukrainian and Local Referendums”, adopted in 1991, even if the relevant law was restored.
In this regard, the Association of Ukrainian Cities believes that there are no legal grounds for not appointing the first and additional local elections in AHs pursuant to the appeals of oblast state administrations.
The Association of Ukrainian Cities supports the stance of Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groysman, ideologist of the decentralisation reform, that the CEC’s decision makes it impossible to hold elections in the newly formed amalgamated hromadas in October, as it creates the risk of slowdown of decentralisation, which is currently one of the most successful and demanded reforms.
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