In a periodically repeated opinion poll, conducted over the last two years, when respondents were asked, "Do you support the actions of Viktor Yushchenko?" the following percentages responded: 'Support them fully.'
February 2005 - 48.3%
April 2005 - 49.0%
August 2005 - 33.2%
October 2005 - 19.2%
January 2006 - 21.3%
April 2006 - 15.6%
[Note: In September 2005 Yushchenko sacked PM Tymoshenko and her ministers.]
The reasons given by observers for this precipitous decline are:
-Voters hopes dashed after the Orange revolution
-Yushchenko's dithering and inability to take any firm decisions
- his lack of passion for any innovation
- he prefers to delegate, rather than to tackle serious problems personally
- an inability to listen to wise council
- and his continued inability to form an effective executive
Yesterday, Party of Regions, after a meeting of their 'big-shots', [see photos from Ukr Pravda] announced they have approved a coalition agreement document which they are prepared to officially propose to NSNU. In the March 23rd Parliamentary elections, PR polled 32%, and NSNU 14%, so not totally unreasonably, PR are demanding Yanukovych be PM, and ministerial porfolios be apportioned two-and-a-half to one, in PR's favor.
Yushchenko's dithering over the formation of a 'democratic coalition' in the VR with Tymoshenko as PM, is further eroding his support amongst the electorate. His approval rating is probably now below 15% - NSNU's is around 10%
One commentator calls the coalition negotiations an Ukrainian Rubick's cube - an apt metaphor.