Roman Kuybida, a member of the Public Integrity Council, said on Oct. 25 that the High Qualification Commission had failed to explain a single one of its decisions to override the council’s vetoes on Supreme Court candidates deemed to be corrupt or dishonest.
Only 120 out of the commission’s 373 decisions on candidates, and only 382 out of the candidates’ 653 profiles have been published, Kuybida said, adding that the decisions on candidates gave no justifications. The commission has denied accusations of wrongdoing.
In September, the High Council of Justice appointed 111 new Supreme Court judges, including 25 discredited judges who participated in political cases, who have undeclared wealth, or who are under investigation in graft cases. President Petro Poroshenko is scheduled to take a decision on signing their credentials by Oct. 29.
Another blow to the judiciary’s image came as Poroshenko on Oct. 6 gave an award to former Kyiv Court of Appeal Judge Grigory Zubets, who jailed dissident Valery Marchenko for criticism of the Soviet authorities in 1984. Marchenko, who was suffering from kidney failure, was sent to a prison camp in Perm Oblast in Russia, and died in a prison hospital in Leningrad. Meanwhile, 52 percent of Kyiv’s judges do not meet professional integrity standards, according to a research published by the Chesno civic watchdog on Oct. 26.