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The Government of Ukraine recently adopted a new constitution. The process which would end in ratification by a national referendum was initiated with a draft prepared in 1992. Adoption of the constitution was delayed by various disagreements, especially those concerning the division of power and the role of the President in any constitutional order. Full Text of Constitution

Executive Power

Institute of Presidency

Executive power is vested in a directly elected President. A Council of Ministers (Cabinet) is headed by a Prime Minister, who is appointed by the President.
The institute of presidency in Ukraine was introduced after the promulgation of the Declaration of National Sovereignty through passing the Law of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic "On the Institution of the Office of the President of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic and Amending the Constitution of the Ukr.SSR” of July 5, 1991. In compliance with this law, a rule was incorporated in the Constitution, according to which the President is the supreme public official of Ukraine and the chief executive officer. On the same day, the Verkhovna Rada adopted the Law "On the President of Ukraine" to specify the status of the President in Ukraine, as well as the Law "On the Election of President in Ukraine". The first President of present-day Ukraine was elected Dec.1,1991. more…

Cabinet of Ministers

The Cabinet of Ministers is, in accordance with the Constitution of Ukraine, the supreme authority in the system of executive power.
The Cabinet of Ministers includes the Prime Minister of Ukraine, first deputy prime minister, three deputy prime ministers, and ministers.
The prime minister is appointed by the President of Ukraine with the consent of more than half of the constitutional composition of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. more…

Local Governing

Ukraine is divided into 24 oblasts (provinces), one autonomous republic (Crimea), 479 rayons (divisions), and 415 cities. The Republic of Crimea has been granted special status, with considerable autonomy in its internal affairs. The Constitution of Ukraine has defined local governing as a right of a territorial community — residents of a village or a voluntary association of residents of several villages, settlements or a town — to independently decide issues of local significance in compliance with the Constitution and laws of Ukraine. In accordance with Art. 141 of the Constitution, the village, settlement and town Councils have deputies who are elected by residents of a village, settlement or a town on the basis of universal, equal and direct suffrage by secret ballot, for a term of four years. more…

Legislative power

Legislative power is the prerogative of the Verkhovna Rada (Supreme Council). It is a unicameral body which has 450 directly elected members. Elections have been held in March, April 1993, and March 1998.

Judicial System

Constitutional Court of Ukraine

The Constitutional Court of Ukraine is the only constitutional jurisdiction body in Ukraine whose object is to guarantee the supremacy of the Constitution of Ukraine as the country`s fundamental law in the whole of Ukraine.
The status and authority of the Constitutional Court and its units are set forth in the Constitution of Ukraine, the Law of Ukraine “On the Constitutional Court of Ukraine” (of Oct.16, 1996), the Regulations of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine (of March 5,1997) and other acts of the Constitutional Court that regulate its activities under the Law “On the Constitutional Court of Ukraine”.
The activity of the Constitutional Court is based on the principles of sepremance of law, independence, collective nature, equality of judges, openness, full and thorough examination of cases and validity of decisions passed by it. more…

Supreme Legal Council

The Chairman of the Supreme Court of Ukraine, the Minister of Justice of Ukraine, the Prosecutor General of Ukraine are, ex officio, members of the Supreme Legal Council.
Pursuant to the Law "On the Supreme Legal Council" of Jan. 15,1998, the Supreme Legal Council is a collective, independent authority which is responsible for the formation of a proficient judiciary corps capable of skillfully, efficiently and unprejudicedly administering justice, as well as for making decisions related to the violation by judges and prosecutors of requirements for noncombining of jobs and, within its competence, their disciplinary responsibility. more…

Office of Public Prosecutor

The Office of Public Prosecutor occupies a separate section in the Constitution of Ukraine with its legal status in the power-sharing system being not yet identified. But in any case, the Office of Public Prosecutor plays an important part in Ukraine`s law-enforcement structure. The bodies of the Office of Public Prosecutor constitute a single centralized system at the head of which is the Prosecutor General, with the subordination of prosecutors of lower rank to those of higher rank.
Pursuant to Art. 122 of the Constitution, the Prosecutor General is appointed for a term of five years with the consent of the Verkhovna Rada and is dismissed by the President of Ukraine. Should the Verkhovna Rada carry a vote of no confidence to the Prosecutor General, he is to resign. more…

Courts of Common Jurisdiction

Under Art. 125 of the Constitution of Ukraine, the system of common jurisdiction courts is based on the principles of territory and specialization. While the territorial principle reflects the country`s administrative and territorial division and is traditional, the principle of specialization is comparatively new for the Ukrainian judiciary system (so far, there are arbitration courts and court martials). This means that the Constitution provides for the formation in the future of specialized courts in specific areas of law (criminal, civil, administrative, financial, etc.). Court specialization will doubtless facilitate the effective and objective examination of cases since a judge cannot be a specialist in all types of law. more…

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