The appetites of winners are holding back the forming of a new coalition in the parliament

The appetites of winners are holding back the forming of a new coalition in the parliament
Photo: Ivan Chernichkin

President Petro Poroshenko and Premier Arseniy Yatsenyuk began talks on forming a coalition in the new government. While the PPB and the People’s Front (PF) consider themselves the main partners in the formation of a parliamentary majority, this has not helped them reach an agreement. Leader of the Samopomich party and mayor of Lviv Andriy Sadoviy has been invited to participate in the talks.

Behind closed doors

Yesterday, leader of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc (PPB) Yuriy Lutsenko announced the start of full-fledged talks with the People’s Front party (PF) on the formation of a coalition in the Verkhovna Rada of the VIII convocation. However, a source of Capital in the PPB said that so far talks are only being held in the “president-premier” format.

“So far, talks are being held between the president and the premier that should result in global agreements,” a source of Capital said. He said talks in a broad format are planned to be held in the nearest days. People’s deputy Volodymyr Kurenniy (UDAR) hopes that an agreement will be quickly reached with the PF. “Other democratic forces will most likely join the coalition. After all, the people will not condone any delays in the process, nor for that matter its disruption,” said Kurenniy.

A source of Capital in the Presidential Administration (PA) said today different variants of assembling a majority, in fact a constitutional majority, in the Verkhovna Rada are being reviewed. “We have 350 votes that we can realistically gather. But first the issue of forming a standard majority must be considered. Here there are two options with or without Yatsenyuk. Discussions on this issue are currently being held,” the source said. He added that the presidential administration sees the Samopomich party as another participant in the coalition. “We believe that in principle the ideas of Samopomich do not differ from those of the president, who is also headstrong about conducting reform. If this political force refuses to enter the coalition, it will tarnish its image in the eyes of the electorate that is deadset on reforms,” a source in the PA said.

Samopomich told Capital that so far nobody has held talks with the party. Oleksandr Danchenko, who ran on the list of Samopomich, told Capital that the party is ready to unite only for voting on certain bills. However, yesterday evening the press service of the president informed that President Poroshenko met with Lviv Mayor Andriy Sadoviy, who is considered the founder of the Samopomich political project. Prior to that, the president held a meeting with Yatsenyuk.

A source of Capital in the PA says that with the participation of Samopomich in the coalition the PPB and the People’s Front can count on a minimum of 270 votes. The votes of first-past-the-post candidates can be tacked on to this figure. Moreover, the PA is not counting on a coalition with the Radical Party of Oleh Lyashko, though the latter will be offered to participate in consultations on forming a coalition.

Poroshenko’s team is also not counting on Yulia Tymoshenko, who was too quick to propose her cooperation. By the way, the only opposition in the PA is the Opposition Bloc, which means that theoretically the format of the coalition could be with or without the People’s Front.

The reason that allies of the president may reject the idea of an alliance with Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s force is his appetite for power. MP of Batkivshchyna Leonid Yemets, who ran in a first-past-the-post constituency in Kyiv representing the People’s Front, said besides the post of premier the party will try to keep Oleksandr Turchynov as the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada. “Yatsenyuk is demanding that all posts in the Cabinet including the speaker be preserved for the party. This does not suit us,” a source in the headquarters of the PPB told Capital.

MP Pavlo Rozenko told Capital that the division of posts in the new government can only be discussed after a coalition agreement is signed. He said there will not be any coalition quotas in the government.

Strategic agreement

Capital learned that yesterday lawyers of the PPB and PF were expected to discuss the draft of the coalition agreement that the team of the president managed to draft prior to the day of voting. People’s deputy Maria Ionova (UDAR) told Capital that the Strategy 2020 program of reforms of President Poroshenko was used as the basis for the coalition agreement. “The 60 reforms that were included in this document with specific deadlines of implementation should be the main objective in the work of the new government. After formation of the Cabinet, the first task of the coalition will be to adopt amendments to the Constitution that relate to the decentralization of power,” Ionova told Capital. “But without Yatsenyuk in the post of premier, talks about a coalition have no prospects,” a candidate of the PF Ksenya Lyapina told Capital.

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