Baranavichy Ukrainian minority NGO sues officials over office

2013 2013-09-20T11:28:09+0300 2013-09-20T11:28:09+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Civil society activist Mikalai Charnavus lodged yesterday a complaint with the Court of Baranavichy district and the city of Baranavichy to challenge the actions by head of the executive committee’s economy department Mrs. Raisa Ulasovich.

In his complaint, Mikalai Charnavus explains that he had repeatedly petitioned the city authorities and Brest regional executive committee with a request to receive premises for the public association of the Ukrainian minority "Kobzar". The executive official provided the NGO with an office, but soon reversed their initial decision.

“The official website of Baranavichy city executive committee says there are a lot of vacant premises. But now to all my requests for getting a room for the NGO "Kobzar" for the purpose of obtaining legal address they keep saying that we will have to pay 2 million rubles in order to participate in an auction,” says the activist.

Mr. Charnavus believes that this is a very large amount of money, as, for example, in Ukraine representatives of Belarusian civil society organizations pay a symbolic sum for their rent: only one hryvnia (1,000 rubles).

The latest petition submitted by the activist to the city executive committee was replied by head of the economy department Raisa Ulasovich, who on August 7, 2013 once again said that the NGO "Kobzar" should participate in an auction, despite the fact that there are numerous vacant offices in the city.

Therefore, Mikalai Charnavus asks the court to order the city authorities to provide the Ukrainian minority NGO with an office.