We take an independent look back over the last three years of Victor Yushchenko reign of terror and the consequences of Ukraine’s political instability since 2004 and the tumultuous collapse of the Orange Revolution eventually leading to serious economic decline and loss of public confidence in the democratic process.
The implosion began in 2005 when Viktor Yushchenko dismissed Yulia Tymoshenko as Prime Minister in what was seen as the first betrayal of his supporters who help him get elected as President, replacing her with his own nominee.
Our Ukraine fails to sign up and form a governing coalition
Immediately after the 2006 Parliamentary election Viktor Yushchenko’s party “Our Ukraine” who received only 14% of the vote refused to commit and sign up to a coalition agreement with his former Orange Revolution partners “Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko” and the Socialist party of Ukraine. Our Ukraine procrastinated for nearly three months whilst continuing to negotiate with Party of Regions a possible coalition between our Ukraine and Part of Regions.
In the midst of the negotiations Our Ukraine tried to force Yulia Tymoshenko from seeking the role of Prime Minister hoping to put in her place their own representative.
Our Ukraine delivers the first blow
When Our Ukraine’s attempt to replace Yulia Tymoshenko failed they then sought to prevent Alexander Moroz, Leader of the Socialist Party from securing the position of Speaker of the parliament.Again Our Ukraine wanted their representative appointed to this position, The Socialist Party and also Yulia Tymoshenko was of the view that given that Our Ukraine held the position of President and Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko held the position of candidate for Prime Minister it was only fair that the Socialist Party secured the position of Speaker.
With time running out the Socialist party realised that Yushchenko and Our Ukraine had not acted in good faith and that a coalition involving the President’s Party Our Ukraine would not happen
The Socialist Party, disillusioned and concerned that time had run out for the formation of a governing coalition decided to withdraw from coalition discussion with Our Ukraine and entered into an agreement with the Party of Regions and the Communist Party to form a governing coalition signalling the beginning of the collapse of the Orange Revolution partnership.
Victor Yushchenko initiates war of attrition
Viktor Yushchenko opposed to the new Parliamentary majority sought to undermine the functioning of the government and threatened to block supply in December 2006 only to back down at the last minute before midnight December 31, 2006.
The Parliament fights back with the support of BYuT
The Parliament, then with the support of Yulia Tymoshenko, in order to minimise the ongoing abuse and misuse of Presidential authority passed legislation to regulate and the powers of the President and the Cabinet of Ministers. This legislation was supported by over 360 members of parliament and as such overrode the right of veto of the President.
Yushchenko attacks democracy and dismisses his first parliament
On April 2007 Viktor Yushchenko, in order to prevent the parliament from securing a constitutional majority required to amend Ukraine’s Constitution, unconstitutionally dismissed the 5th convocation of Ukraine Parliament. Yushchenko later illegally interfered with the operation and independence of Ukraine’s Constitutional Court and on May 30 unilaterally dismissed three Constitutional Court Judges in order to prevent the Constitutional Court from overturning his decree dismissing Ukraine’s democratically elected Parliament.
It was not until Yulia Tymoshenko and later members of the Our Ukraine bloc withdraw and resigned their Parliamentary mandates that agreement was finally reached for the holding of fresh Parliamentary elections which were held on September 30.
Prior to the September 2007 poll Our Ukraine joined forced with the People’s Self-Defence Party a breakaway “pro-presidential” group headed by Yuriy Lutsenko
Party of Regions (34.37%) 175 seats
Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko (30.72%) 156 seats
Our Ukraine-People’s Self Defence (14.16%) 72 seats
Communist Party of Ukraine (5.39%) 27 seats
Bloc Lytvyn (3.97%) 20 Seats
The Socialist Party of Ukraine received 2.86% of the vote falling short by 0.14% of the 3% threshold required to secure representation.
New unstable governing coalition formed
Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko and Our Ukraine – People-Self Defence group (who together represented 45% of the electorate) held a slender and unstable majority of 228 out of 450 parliamentary seats. After two rounds of voting the parliament finally elected Yulia Tymoshenko as Prime Minister with only 226 votes and managed to form a governing coalition.
Yushchenko’s policy of destabilization continues unabated
Soon after taking Office Viktor Bolaha, The Secretary of the office of the President, with the support of Viktor Yushchenko began a concerted effort to destabilize the governing coalition. Two members of the Our Ukraine – Peoples’ Self-Defence bloc refused to support the Tymoshenko government preferring instead to sit on the side benches. Their refusal signalling yet again the collapse of the Orange coalition.
Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko support democratic Constitutional reform opposed by Yushchenko
In April 2008 Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko, to the annoyance and disagreement of the pro-presidential forces, announced her parties support for Constitutional reform that would see Ukraine adopt a full parliamentary model of governance in-line with other European States and corresponding reduction in the powers of the President.
The policy of reform and the adoption of a Parliamentary system was widely supported by all parties except Our Ukraine, however agreement could not be reached on the exact terms of the wording of a revised Constitution.
Under the provision of Ukraine’s Constitution the Constitution in part can be amended by a Constitutional majority of 300 out of 450 members of a parliament.
In the meantime Viktor Yushchenko, who has been opposed to democratic constitutional reform and the formation of a European Parliamentary system since 2002, planned the second dismissal of Ukraine’s parliament in as many years in order to prevent the parliament from reaching agreement and enacting change to Ukraine’s constitution.
Yushchenko fans the flames of division as war breaks out between Russia and Georgia – Tymoshenko refuses to support Yushchenko’s attempts to escalate regional conflict
IN August 2008 Viktor Yushchenko tried to embroil Ukraine in the regional disputation and military conflict with Russia following the Georgian Government’s provocation and attack on its break-away province of South Ossetia.
Yulia Tymoshenko aware of the circumstances of the provocation refused to allow Ukraine to become involed in the dispute which would have seriously escalated the conflict and divided Ukraine bringing it close to facing its own civil war. As a result of Yulia sensable policies Ukraine’s Parliamentary government prevented any further escalation of the conflict by refusing to support Viktor Yushchenko’s unjustified policy of divison and conflict.
Yushchenko makes false allegations of High Treason against Ukraine’s Prime Minister in retaliation for her refusal to support the war against Russia.
Viktor Yushchenko in making the allegation of treason had the security forces (SBU) prosecute Yulia Tymoshenko.
The security forces investigated the President’s complaint and found that there was no case to answer and that the Prime Minister had not committed High Treason as falsely claimed by the President
Our Ukraine withdraw support of Governing coalition ending the Orange partnership
On September 2, 2008, with relations between the President and the governing coalition fuelled by bitter acrimony, Victor Yushchenko’s Party ‘Our Ukraine’ announced the collapse of the governing coalition and the withdrawal of Our Ukraine forcing the People’s Self Defence party to also withdraw from the coalition agreement.
Second Parliament dismissed one year after being elected
On October 7 Victor Yushchenko dismissed the Parliament for the second time is as many years and called fresh parliamentary elections. In spite attempts and efforts made by Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko to meet the President’s demands, Victor Yushchenko refused to compromise bringing to a complete end final collapse of the Orange coalition that was formed in 2004 which saw Victor Yushchenko elected to Office.
President’s support reduced to less then 5%
Victor Yushchenko’s public support has collapsed and is now sitting on around 5% support according to latest public opinion polls. He is unlikely to be re-elected to a second term of office with or without the support of a major political party.
No change or a return to the past expected as a result of new poll
All indication are that the results of fresh elections will produce more or less the same outcome as previous elections in 2006 or 2007 leaving the question as to what Victor Yushchenko hopes to gain from holding fresh elections and abandoning the existing governing coalition.
Allegations of Presidential constitutional coup surface
Some claim that President is trying to provoke a constitutional confrontation in-order to justify and create a situation so that the President can call a state of emergency and install a Presidential dictatorship.
Date tentative set for new poll
Elections were schedules for December 7, 2008 but following another round of court challenges and further interference in the judicial process by the President, the latest round of Parliamentary elections are now scheduled for December 14 with expectations that this date will also be postponed
The saga of the President’s betrayal continues with Ukraine now suffering serious economic decline as a result of the enforced political instability initiated by the Office of the President, Victor Yushchenko