KYIV, Ukraine, April 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The new law On Principles of Prevention and Combating Corruption in Ukraine, adopted by the Verkhovna Rada (the Ukrainian parliament), stipulates that government officials and their close relatives now are obliged to declare their income and, what is more important, any expenses that exceed their income and publish such financial declarations in the official press.
The draft of anticorruption law was submitted by Ukrainian president last year and prepared in accordance with the requirements of the United Nations Convention against Corruption, Council of Europe Criminal Law Convention on Corruption, and Council of Europe Civil Law Convention on Corruption.
Now government officials will have to declare their monthly salary as well as an overall annual income including income received from abroad. In addition members of state and regional government as well as their close relatives, identified as spouses, children, parents, siblings, grandparents, grandchildren, adoptive parents, adopted children, etc., will have to disclose their assets including real estate, bank assets, equity, information on existing loans, etc.
The groundbreaking innovation of this law is an unprecedented for Ukrainian legislation obligation of public servants to declare their expenses. Such practice is adopted in most developed countries as key element in fighting corruption. Many countries scrupulously track incomes and expenses of their public servants. For example, in Singapore, if an owner cannot prove the legitimate origins of property, it is confiscated. In the US and EU a civil servant may be visited by the tax authorities if discrepancy is found between income and expenses.
Mykola Azarov, Ukrainian Prime Minister, said that the most effective anti-corruption measure is to oblige Ukrainian officials to declare all their spending and expenses.
The adopted law will take effect on July 1, 2011, except for the article on financial control, which will be in force as of Jan. 1, 2012. The new law requires all government officials including head of the state and members of the parliament to bear criminal and/or administrative responsibility for acts of corruption.
The new law would require no additional financial costs from the state budget but will significantly contribute to the improvement of Ukrainian legislation on combating corruption.
SOURCE Worldwide News Ukraine