Members of Parliament open Verkhovna Rada

Kyiv, 22 September 2016 - On the eve of the International Democracy Day under the framework of the Global Legislative Openness Week (GLOW), the participants of the UNDP-supported Open Parliament Initiative organized a campaign "What's in Rada?" at the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine (VRU).

29334857784 a0c9a4888d76876897Members of Parliament (MPs) received the MP's Declaration of Openness, which oblige MPs to fulfill the following tasks:

- Publish complete information about their assistants employed on a paid basis (contacts, biography, declaration of assets, income, and financial liabilities) on the MP's official page on the VRU website;
- Announce, conduct, and report on monthly meetings with citizens;
- Publish reports on their activities twice a year;
- Publish MPs' appeals, inquiries, and responses on the VRU website;
- Communicate with citizens via e-mail specified on the MP's page on the VRU website.

Speaking to the members of the Initiative, most MPs agreed to fulfill all the items of the Declaration, expressed their wishes, and talked about their contributions to the strengthening of publicity and openness of the Ukrainian parliament.

29848223012 509f265e577695768976MP Viktoria Ptashnyk noted that she acts according to this Declaration and is ready to work more on openness. "The only thing that causes a debate is the publication of MPs' appeals. There are a lot of them. Having two assistants who are still students, it is physically not realistic to publish large stacks of documents. This work is full-time. In addition, appeals do not have such a great legal weight as inquiries," said the MP.

MP Volodymyr Parasiuk fully supported the need for MPs' publicity and openness to voters. He promised to promptly report to the public about his activities and undergo the inspection with dignity. He immediately signed the Declaration.

MP Olha Bohomolets eagerly talked with the representatives of the Open Parliament Initiative, speaking about the healthcare reform, the procurement of medicines, and her public activity as well as stressing that she as an MP supports openness in everything. However, with regard to the Declaration, she said: "If the public needs it, let the public do it." At the suggestion of the Initiative's coordinator to help collect all the necessary documents and submit them to the Verkhovna Rada's Secretariat for publication on the VRU website, she excused herself saying she has no time and is late to a meeting.
29848114162 049f0d910d76876875697"It is very important that MPs should remember about openness not in front of the journalists' cameras or when criticizing their opponents, but consider this principle as key in their daily activities. At the same time, the Open Parliament Initiative is ready to help MPs to look for the best ways to interact with citizens, to engage them in lawmaking, and to make the process more open and transparent," said Natalia Vatamaniuk, the coordinator of the Open Parliament Initiative.

The following MPs signed the Declaration: Ostap Yednak, Dmytro Dobrodomov, Volodymyr Parasiuk, Ihor Lutsenko, Viacheslav Konstantynovskyi, and Oksana Bilozir.