Ukraine's Constitutional Court has commenced the oral consideration of the President Viktor Yuschenko's appeal against the resolution of the Verkhovna Rada on scheduling the presidential elections for October 25.
The reporting judge is Ivan Dombrovskyi.
In compliance with the appeal, section 5 article 103 of the Constitution envisions that the presidential elections should be held last Sunday of the last month of the president's fifth year in office, which means that the elections should take place on January 17, 2010.
The last Sunday of the last month of the last year?
January 17 is not the last Sunday of the month of January or did they cut out a few days to try and shorten Ukraine's bitter cold winter?
The last thing Ukraine needs is a prolonged Presidential campaign and an election in the middle of Ukraine's winter.
The Constitution of Ukraine [Article 85(7)] allows for the parliament to determine when Presidential elections are held. The Ukrainian Parliament, supported by a absolute majority of its members, has called the next Presidential elections for October 25. 2009. The last Sunday of the month five years from the date of the previous election held in 2004.
Ukraine has a ridiculous two round Presidential voting system which means that Ukraine will go into the second round of voting in November/December. The two round Presidential ballot is expected to cost Ukraine over 350 Million dollars ($100 Million in direct costs per round and a further $150 Million in campaign costs) Money that would be better spent elsewhere. If Ukraine adopted a preferential, "One Round" voting system the costs would be halved and Ukraine would know the results of the election in days as opposed to months.
Viktor Yuschenko, instead of clinging on to office for the sake of three months by appealing to Constitutional Court, should offer his resignation so that Ukraine can elect its next head of state in warmer weather.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009