Puppet Verkhovna Rada: from Donbass to Kolomoyskyy

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e1dc6dd968dcc5b458aa77b68a180fc4The last current week of the Verkhovna Rada turned out to be productive not because of the quantity of the adopted law drafts but because of their significance and also it demonstrated the enforcement of the President’s positions that turns the parliament into an obedient tool for solving of corporate interests.

On March 17, deputies gathered to consider several crucial documents, among which the issue of districts with a special procedure of self-administration in Donbass caused the most of disagreements. The Rada was supposed to start working at 12.00 but the coalition failed to reach a common denominator. The faction “Fatherland” made a decision not to vote for this resolution that was revealed by Igor Lutsenko in the lobby. “We do not want to define new boarders by means of this decision, as in reality this decision means recognition of the new boarders and the territories occupied by Russia,” the people’s deputy emphasized. The Self-Reliance faction divided into two halves: 13 representatives were ready to “approve” and 14 – to “disapprove”.

It is clear that the draft of the law that was lobbied by the President so actively could be failed by the deputies. So Petro Poroshenko started to act decisively: he didn’t go to the Verkhovna Rada as he used to do it before, but he called heads of the factions on the carpet. “We are going to the President right now. The President wants to meet heads of the factions again in order to try to get his arguments across one more time,” the leader of the Radical Party Oleg  Lyashko said journalists, having also added that his party didn’t support the decision regarding Donbass. History conceals what the President discussed with the leaders of the factions, but in the evening session of the Verkhovna Rada the president draft law (No.2378) on a special procedure of the local self-administration in Donbass was adopted by 265 votes. According to the document, districts that are controlled by the rebels will be able to receive the special status only after elections are held there… under the Ukrainian legislation. No wonder that the head of the “DNR” Zakharchenko refused to recognize the decision of the Ukrainian parliament. As the next step, deputies approved the presidential resolution No.2374, according to which the special procedure of local self-administration is implemented in 85 populated localities of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions, excluding such cities as Donetsk, Lugansk and Debaltsevo.  And in the end, the districts with the special status were recognized as “temporary occupied territories until the withdrawal of all illegal armed groups…, restoration of the complete control of Ukraine over the state border.”

The second act was played off not by Petro Poroshenko himself but already by the deputies of his faction, who successfully executed infringing on assets of Ukrainian oligarch and governor of the Dnipropetrovsk region Igor Kolomoyskiy, on March 19. In the morning, the leader of the Radical Party Oleg Lyashko announced that his faction (the biggest protectors of the “national matter”) together with “Fatherland” advocate for the speedy adoption of a draft No.2273, which allows to implement reduction of the quorum  for meetings of shareholders of all forms of incorporations. What is such the rush about? Lyashko answers directly: it is the desire to return the company Ukrnafta, 51% shares of which belong to NJSC Naftogaz and 42% are owned by the group “Privat” of Igor Kolomyskiy, to the state. However, lobbyists of the amendment had to worry a little bit because of the Parliament Committee on Economic Policy that could not gather for a meeting. People’s deputies started to work only by 15.00 and it has to be said, they managed rather fast: despite the fact that the main draft of the law (2273) was only the 5th on the agenda of the Committee, the positive resolution for it was prepared after half an hour. And then, as they say, the rest is paperwork (or if to be more precise – a matter of technology): the law draft has been approved by 275 votes.

Then there was a visit of Kolomoyskiy to the office of Ukrtransnafta, which director was recently dismissed, emotional speech of the oligarch to a Radio Svoboda journalist (watch the video) and the immediate reaction from the deputies of Petro Poroshenko Bloc Sergey Leshchenko and Mustafa Nayema with demand of resignation of Kolomoyskiy from the position of the governor. “We demand to estimate actions of the governor of the Dnipropetrovsk region and will demand on his resignation due to his behavior and insult of the journalist Andrushko. Such expressions are inappropriate in the country that experienced Maydan. This is why we will raise a question of his resignation,” Leshchenko announced flashy.

On March 20, the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Freedom of Speech and Informational Policy quite logically demanded from the Dnipropetrovsk governor public apology to the journalist Sergey Andrushko.

It should also be mentioned that 226 votes for an appeal to the President to deprive the deputy Novinskiy, who retains citizenship of Russia – the aggressor and occupant state as the Verkhovna Rada admitted itself, of the Ukrainian citizenship were not found among the deputies. It is interesting whether such votes are found regarding the second citizenship of Kolomoyskiy…


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