Four years after Ukraine’s Revolution of Dignity began, Ukraine continues to work on an ambitious reform agenda tackling corruption and stimulating the economy. Thanks to public pressure, civic engagement, and encouragement from international financial organizations, the government has introduced an open procurement process, created oversight and enforcement bodies throughout government, and required public officials to declare their wealth and assets. However, progress has slowed as anti-corruption agencies including the National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU) and Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office (SAPO) have come under attack from parties within the government as well as the oligarchic interests that remain entrenched in the country. Ukraine’s independent journalists have been at the frontline of the fight, exposing corruption among the Ukrainian security services, government, and oligarchs. But they too have been subjected to increasing attacks from hired thugs and even the security services themselves.
On Thursday, December 7, Hudson Institute hosted a panel discussion with Natalie Sedletska, Emmanuel Mathias, and Joanna Rohozinska on the ongoing challenges of anti-corruption reform in Ukraine. Ms. Sedletska is an investigative journalist and former Vaclav Havel Journalism Fellow with RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service, and the host of the Service’s award-winning weekly television program “Schemes: Corruption in Details” – a joint production with Ukraine’s First National TV channel in the Ukrainian language. Dr. Mathias is a deputy of the Financial Integrity Group of the IMF’s Legal Department. Ms. Rohozinska is the senior program officer responsible for Northern Europe at the National Endowment for Democracy. Hudson Research Fellow Hannah Thoburn moderated the discussion.