Ukraine : Kyrylo Tymoshenko One of Zelensky’s closest aides resigns

The clos­est aide to the Ukrain­ian pres­i­dent, Volodymyr Zelen­sky, has resigned ahead of an expect­ed reor­ga­ni­za­tion of the government.

Kyry­lo Tymoshenko, deputy head of the pres­i­den­t’s office, thanked Zelen­sky for “giv­ing us the oppor­tu­ni­ty to do good every minute of every day.”

Zelen­sky has been embroiled in scan­dals involv­ing the use of lux­u­ry cars, which he denies.

Mr Zelen­sky has sug­gest­ed that oth­er senior offi­cials will also leave the gov­ern­ment in the com­ing days.

Ukrain­ian lead­ers have announced a series of per­son­nel changes in the gov­ern­ment, local author­i­ties and secu­ri­ty services.

Local media report­ed that the depar­ture of Tymoshenko, who over­saw region­al pol­i­cy and was involved in Mr Zelen­sky’s elec­tion cam­paign, could be part of a pres­i­den­tial reshuffle.

But the reor­ga­ni­za­tion came amid a crack­down on cor­rup­tion in Ukraine. This is one of the EU’s main demands for the coun­try to move for­ward with its EU mem­ber­ship appli­ca­tion. Author­i­ties have banned all state civ­il ser­vants from leav­ing Ukraine except for autho­rized busi­ness trips.

On Mon­day, Ukraine’s deputy min­is­ter for infra­struc­ture, Vasyl Lozin­skyi, was fired and detained by police for accept­ing bribes worth $400,000. Lozin­skyi denies the charges.

Ukraine has a his­to­ry of cor­rup­tion and was ranked 122nd out of 180 coun­tries in the 2021 Cor­rupt Coun­tries Rank­ing by Trans­paren­cy International.

In a speech on Sun­day, Zelen­sky pledged that “there will be no return to the way things were in the past for var­i­ous peo­ple close to state institutions.”

And Mr. Zelen­skiy’s Peo­ple’s Ser­vice Par­ty leader, David Alakamia, has promised that cor­rupt offi­cials could face prison terms.

Offi­cials at all lev­els have been issu­ing con­stant warn­ings through offi­cial and infor­mal chan­nels to focus on the war, help the vic­tims, cut down on bureau­cra­cy and end shady busi­ness deals.” Many of them lis­tened, but unfor­tu­nate­ly some did­n’t,” he said in a state­ment post­ed to Telegram.

If the “con­ve­nience of civ­i­liza­tion” does not work, it will be done accord­ing to wartime laws. This applies both to the recent pur­chase of a gen­er­a­tor and to the new scan­dal at the Min­istry of Defense. ”

Min­is­ter of Defense Reznikov has also come under fire after reports that he signed a con­tract to pur­chase mil­i­tary food at a high price. Reznikov claimed it was a “tech­ni­cal mistake”.

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