Transformation experience sharing
The Revolution of Dignity brought about fundamental changes in Ukrainian society. These changes were also reflected in the country’s political life. New political elites are emerging. It can be characterised as pro-democratic and pro-European, thus, creating significant political power with interest to remove the existing oligarchs-influenced politics and replace it with truly democratic system of governance based on the rule of law. Supporting this new political class free of the post-soviet legacy is also in our interest.
It would be naive to assume that the revolution and sudden societal change would make Ukrainian oligarchs-influenced, organized crime vanish overnight. However, its relationships and influence on politics underwent significant change. Current situation thus resembles chaotic kleptocracy, which is a rather well known phenomenon from certain European countries, although in Ukrainian environment some negative aspects manifest themselves more clearly than elsewhere. Corruption is also used as an instrument of hybrid aggression.
Nevertheless, there are many indicators, which make us confident that Ukrainian departure from its past is definite. Ukrainian revolution against the institutionalized mafia has been paid in blood. Thousands of lives have been lost during the conflict with Russia. However, successful defence against much stronger adversary also removed all doubts about the existence of Ukrainian nation. Organised crime, which has been an unfortunate feature of Ukrainian political life for many years, is now being rivalled by powerful and invigorated civil society, which has started exercising previously unseen influence over Ukrainian political life.
Active civil society, together with pressure from foreign partners are among key elements contributing to pushing of important reforms and dismantling of corruption and criminal networks. Certain success has been already achieved in this regard. In our effort to strengthen civil society in Ukraine we carefully select our partners and share with them positive and well as negative examples from transformation of the post-communist countries.
New politicians, local NGOs and representatives of local administration and councils are among our priorities. We see corruption practices and state-organised crimes nexus on local level as the main challenge. However, reintegration of those, who have been affected by the conflict in Donbas, is also of tremendous importance. For those reasons, our partners on the local level are Alternativa Pisochin and Maidan Monitoring in Kharkiv region, Legal Space in Kherson, Hromada council in Uzhorod, Vostok SOS in Sieverodonetsk.