Monday, December 17, 2007

Ukraine faces a unstable and unsustainable political future

Ukraine's new Parliament two months after the September 30 election meet last week.

Our Ukraine and Yulia Tymoshenko "Democratic in Name alone"

The election was won by the "orange coalition" which has renamed itself and now calls itself the "Democratic coalition", although its policies and deeds are far from democrartic. Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko with the support of Our Ukraine People's Self Defence bloc, who together represent 45% of the electorate, hold a slender two seat majority in the new parliament.

Prior to the president's controversial and arguable unconstitutional dismissal of Ukraine's previous parliament, Ukraine had a degree of political stability undly to be undermined by Ukraine's President, the new convocation is already showing signs of instability and unsustainability.

The extent of instability became evident when Parliament failed to support Victor Yushenko's nomination of Yulia Tymoshenko for Prime-minister with two members of the so called "democratic coalition" refusing to suport her nomination the parlaiment voted 225 members for and two against. The remaining 223 members refused to particpate and obstained from voting.

Yulia Tymoshenko and Our Ukraine tried to down play the division and blamed the embarrassing outcome on a fault with the parliament electronic voting system even as going as far as accusing the opposition of sabatage. The parliaments electronic voting system was later checked by Ukraine's security forces and was given the all clear indicatng that the failure of Yulia to be elected was not due to faulty equipment.

Yulia Tymoshenko, true to form and past actions has resorted to threats, intimidation and blackmail to shore up support for her nomination and appointment as Ukraine's next prime-minister.

Members of Our Ukraine who are opposed to the appointment of Yulia Tymoshenko as Prime-Minister, preferring instead the formation of a broad coalition that involves all political parties, have been threatened with dis-endorsement and dismissal from the parliament if they do not tow the "democratic party" line.

Yulia Tymoshenko has made it perfectly clear that if Our Ukraine does not support her nomination she will stand against Viktor Yushchenko at the next Presidential election. If Yulia withdraws support for Viktor Yushchenko then Our Ukraine and Yushchenko will be assigned into the Ukrainian history books - another victim of Ukraine's historical political divide and betrayal.

The President, who actions have resulted in the divisions and political instability of Ukraine, facing threats and intimidation has renominated Yulia Tymoshenko and the parliament is expected to once again vote on the appointment of Prime-minister later this week

Yulia Tymoshchenko, who previously held the position of Prime-Minister, was removed from Office by Viktor Yushchenko in 2005 and replaced by the President's nominee and member of the president 's political party "Our Ukraine" less then 12 months into Tymoshenko's term of office following serious economic decline and a loss of confidence in Ukraine's political direction.

In March 2006 Yulia Tymoshenko, with the support of Our Ukraine and the Socialist Party of Ukraine narrowly won a majority in the parliament but this majority failed to come into existence following the Our Ukraine's refusal to divide equally the positions of responsibility amongst its coalition allies.

Our Ukraine's ongoing efforts to undermine Ukraine's Parliamentary democracy, in the hope of restoring a presidential dictatorship, resulted in a loss of confidence and withdrawal of support from the Socialist Party and the formation of a new democratic and stable governing coalition between the Socialist Party, Party of Regions and the Communist Party of Ukraine. The new coalition in turn elected Viktor Yanakovych, Viktor Yushchenko's opponent in the 2004 presidential election, as Prime-Minsiter

During the term of Office of Viktor Yanakovych economic growth and stability were restored by the governing coalition but the governement and Parliament was constantly having to defend themselves against ongoing attempts by Ukraine's President to undermine Ukraine's parliamentary democracy.

In April 2006 The president unconstitutionally dismissed the democratically parliament sparking a constitutional and political crisis brought on by a power struggle between the President and the Parliament.

Following a six month stand-off and direct interference by the President in the functioning of Ukraine's constitutional Court in order to prevent the court form ruling the President's dismissal of Ukraine's Parliament as being illegal, agreement was reached to hold fresh early parliamentary elections which were held on September 30. The agreement was contingent on members of the opposition resigning their mandate and by doing so provide "constitutional grounds" for the termination of the parliament. Under Ukraine's constitution the parliament must maintain 2/3rds of its composition by elected representatives in order to remain competent.

The election provided little change and has only made matters worst

Yulia Tymoshenko received 30.7% of the vote, Our Ukraine Peoples Self Defence Party 14.1% (combined total 44.8%). The highest polling Party , Party of Regions 34.4%, Communist Party 5.4% .Bloc Lytvyn 3.9% and the socialist party fell short of the required 3% threshold representation barrier having only obtained 2.9% of the vote,

Block Yulia Tymoshenko and Our Ukraine together hold 227 or the 450 members of Parliament. The extent of division and disagreement within the new governing coalition is a recipe for disaster and unless Yulia can seek and obtain the support of the Lytvn bloc will evitable face defeat with the Opposition able to call fresh elections at a time of their choosing in one years time. Except next time it is excepted that the parliament will face early elections along with Ukraine's President.