Reformer of the week
The Prosecutor General’s Office has opened an investigation against Gizo Uglava, a deputy chief of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU), accusing him of hiding his Georgian citizenship and tax evasion, Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko said on May 24.
Uglava denied the accusations and interpreted the case as part of the authorities’ efforts to destroy Ukraine’s only independent law enforcement agency, which has prosecuted political heavyweights like State Fiscal Service Chief Roman Nasirov and ex-lawmaker Mykola Martynenko.
In March, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko failed to push through parliament the appointment of his loyalist, UK citizen Nigel Brown, as a NABU auditor in order to control the bureau, though Brown is now again competing for the job. Petros Clerides, who is allegedly close to Poroshenko’s gray cardinal and lawmaker Oleksandr Hranovsky, is competing for the job of the NABU auditor appointed by the Cabinet of Ministers, in a non-transparent and shady procedure. Clerides resigned as Cyprus’ attorney general amid a corruption scandal in 2013.
Meanwhile, parliament is set to consider a bill banning the anti-graft bureau from starting cases against top officials if other law enforcers had previously closed similar cases against them. Last year parliament failed to pass a similar bill to restrict the bureau’s independence.