Initiators of CHESNO movement were issued a positive opinion of auditors on the financial transparency and implementation efficiency of their "Filter the Rada!" campaign.
Findings of auditors confirmed that the funds received by CHESNO initiators from donors under grant agreements were used for designated purposes; international experts in the field of combat against political corruption called the campaign "successful and influential".
The financial audit was passed by 7 non-governmental organisations which fundraised more than USD 800,000 for the CHESNO campaign. More than USD 14,000 was received on the campaign's charitable contributions account from individuals.
The audit was initiated by the Coordination Council of CHESNO representing 12 non-governmental organisations, most of which obtained funding for performing project activities within the scope of the CHESNO movement.
Auditors inspected campaign funding and efficiency over the period from 1 October 2011 till 30 October 2012.
The financial audit of CHESNO was carried out by TOV Kompas Auditing and Consultancy Group. The consistent assessment of the transparency, political impartiality and balance of CHESNO's analysis results was provided by the expert team of the European Research Centre for Anti-Corruption and State-building (ERCAS) headed by Professor Dr. Alina Mungiu-Pippidi.
The financial audit and assessment of integrity of CHESNO campaign was coordinated and funded by the UNITER "Ukraine National Initiatives to Enhance Reforms" Project performed by PACT and supported by USAID.
Financial Audit Results
Kompas auditors expressed their professional opinion on the financial statements of CHESNO initiator organisations and the "Filter the Rada!" campaign. For instance, auditors came to the conclusion that funds received by each of the 7 CHESNO campaign participants from international donors were used for designated purposes.
It is also mentioned in the report that the "financial information about the received income and incurred expenses has been accurately stated in financial statements in line with accounting principles described in the National Accounting Standards as required by terms and conditions of agreements with donor organisations".
At the same time, auditors pointed out some weaknesses in tender-based procurement procedures and the overall co-ordination of financial revenues within the scope of the CHESNO campaign. For instance, this applies to the publication of the non-financial assistance obtained from people, which was regularly reported on the campaign site.
CHESNO Campaign Integrity Assessment Results
A team of experts from the European Research Centre for Anti-Corruption and State-building performed an independent assessment of the CHESNO campaign on the basis of the following criteria:
the representation of interests of the civil society by campaign initiators;
the independence of movement participants from any party control (independence from political interest);
the accessibility and sufficiency of the information underlying the audit of parliamentary candidates;
the objective handling of the information to rule out the discrimination of candidates and the trust of the society to CHESNO results (due process).
Experts came to a conclusion as a result of the assessment that the "CHESNO process and impact were equally successful" and “the success on placing integrity high on the political agenda seems beyond doubt”.
In their preliminary report, the analysts also mentioned that "information campaigns of this type stimulate civic activism, citizen participation and finally enlightened voting.”
“The CHESNO campaign had the right objectives and employed in good faith a sound methodology: inherent errors were corrected during the process.”
“The campaign was also successful in involving more people than ever before, particularly in the deep country, in the effort to assess candidates and inform voters” experts said.
Experts mentioned in their preliminary report that "CHESNO initiators will need more time and research effort to assess the campaigns impact on the voters: "The main problem is that a poor electoral offer (candidates with integrity problems from all main parties) limits severely the choice of voters and the potential direct electoral impact of such a campaign. This suggests that while monitoring of integrity during elections is highly visible and quite impactful for the agenda, permanent civil society work is needed between elections to encourage parties, for electoral advantage if not deep belief, to set up permanent internal monitoring of integrity and ethical committees to screen their own representatives.”
Kompas Audit and Consultancy Group carried out a financial audit of the use of funds for designated purposes in the course of the performance of project activities within the scope of the CHESNO campaign over the period from 1 October 2011 till 31 October 2012. The audit was financed by the UNITER "Ukraine National Initiatives to Enhance Reforms" Project performed by PACT and supported by USAID, the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), the International Renaissance Foundation, OMIDYAR NETWORK FUND, and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES).
The financial audit involved audits of:
Media Law Institute non-governmental organisation;
Center of Political Studies and Analysis non-governmental organisation;
Center UA non-governmental organisation;
Internews Ukraine international non-governmental organisation;
Committee of Voters of Ukraine non-governmental organisation;
East Europe Foundation international charitable organisation;
Democratic Initiatives charitable foundation.
The amount of the financial aid provided received from donors by initiating organisations of the CHESNO campaign totalled USD 860,455.