“I think this is sabotage”
The period of unity in the face of an external threat in Ukrainian politics has clearly passed. Every week, then new information about discord and undercover battles in the upper echelon of power. On Friday, they started talking seriously about the upcoming resignation of Prime Minister Dmitry Shmygal. The mayors of several Ukrainian cities have asked President Zelensky to remove the head of the Cabinet, as he is engaged in sabotage.
Photo: Global Look Press
The heads of the municipalities accuse the prime minister of creating artificial obstacles in supplying the army with everything necessary. According to the mayors of the cities, the municipalities at their own expense purchase bulletproof vests, generators, diesel fuel, communications equipment for the military.
In order to get this to the troops without delay, in early May, the country decided to carry out purchases on an advance payment. However, Shmyhal voluntarily blocked this decision, stating that purchases should be made as before – through the PROZORRO tender system. On the one hand, this puts obstacles in the way of possible corruption, but on the other hand, the complex and multi-stage system of public procurement works in such a way that the Ukrainian army now has a clear lack of not only weapons, but also conventional helmets and body armor…
a letter sent by Lviv Mayor Andriy Sadov to Zelensky as the Supreme Commander-in-Chief states that the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine “demonstrates a complete lack of understanding of the situation and does not correspond to the military situation in which Ukraine is located. I also inform you that there is no feedback between the officials of the Cabinet of Ministers and the heads of cities and regions. We are on different planets.”
The mayor of Dnepr (Dnepropetrovsk), the notorious Boris Filatov, spoke much harsher. According to him, five times the Association of Ukrainian Cities appealed to Shmyhal with a request to put the issue of the possibility of financing the Armed Forces of Ukraine from local budgets on the agenda of the Cabinet meeting. The heads of ten cities also wrote letters to him. And every time he refused. “I consider this sabotage and sabotage. Ready to testify to law enforcement,” Filatov wrote.
Meanwhile, the possible resignation of Shmyhal was also discussed at the very top. The head of the Cabinet is clearly not coping with the situation. However, they say. that he would be sacrificed in the autumn: then “scapegoats” would be needed, on which it would be possible to blame not only the failures at the front, but also the rapid deterioration of the economic situation.
By the way, for the first time, Shmyhal’s impending resignation was discussed for the first time in January, even before the start of the Russian special operation in Ukraine. Then “tariff riots” began in the country: people received bills with gas and heating tariffs increased by 20-30% and began to resent. Zelensky's rating began to plummet. The Russian special operation made us forget about these intra-Ukrainian problems for a while, but now a pile of new ones has accumulated. Take the same impossibility to organize the export of grain from Ukraine in order to earn a little money on this. And in general – this whole strange situation with grain, which for some reason turned out to be many times less in warehouses than it appears on the papers.
In the autumn, when it turns out that there is no new grain, and there is little old grain, and for the most part it is not suitable for use, a person will be needed who will answer for this. Now, the head of the Servant of the People faction in the Verkhovna Rada, David Arakhamia, assures that the issue of Shmyhal's resignation was not considered either in factions or on commissions.
However, experts are already actively discussing the candidates for possible successors to Shmyhal. And despite the difficult situation in the country, there are several options for replacement. One of them is a member of the current Cabinet, Minister of Infrastructure Alexander Kubrakov. He is one of the few members of the government who did not leave the country at the end of February-March, was next to Zelensky in the presidential bunker. But his candidacy is considered suitable not only because of personal loyalty. What is also important is that he is an economist who has a school at Harvard behind him. In addition, he participated in economic projects with the World Bank. That is, Western curators, in theory, should not have objections to it.
The second possible candidate is Rostislav Shurma, deputy chairman of the president's office. The presidential administration is now taking over all power in the country. Therefore, the desire to have a person at the head of the Cabinet is understandable. However, Shurma “his own” is rather conditional. Previously, he worked in the structures of the oligarch Rinat Akhmetov, before that he was a deputy of the Donetsk Regional Council from the Party of Regions, and later the chairman of the Zaporozhye regional organization of the Opposition Platform. And, despite the fact that he is also an economist by education and his career was connected either with Zaporizhstal or with Metinvest, this background may have a negative impact on his claims to the premier's chair.
Everything is here depends on what kind of relationship Akhmetov and Zelensky will have by autumn. At the end of last year, they were quite hot: the president even accused the oligarch of preparing a coup. But now the feuds have been put aside, Akhmetov is providing all possible financial assistance to the authorities, and therefore there may be some agreements on the candidacy of the new head of the Cabinet. It remains to wait for autumn …