Thursday, October 19, 2006

Coalitions and oppositions

So the saga is over - yesterday NSNU faction leader Roman Bezsmertniy formally announced that his party is going into opposition in the VR.

From yesterday, then, Ukraine has two opposition groups: BYuT who formally announced their opposition status several weeks ago, and now NSNU.

It is not clear if any serious discussions about co-operation have taken place between these two blocs , or if they ever will. NSNU are setting up a so-called 'European Ukraine' grouping of political forces which they hope will include smaller parties that did not make it into the VR in the March 2006 VR elections. They are still behaving as if they were the second largest bloc in the VR, and not the third largest. [In the elections they obtained 81 seats in the VR; BYuT obtained 129. PoR with 186 seat were the largest party]

Many experts doubt whether NSNU will get together with BYuT in a co-ordinated manner in the VR - the problem being 'that woman' Yuliya T. The two parties will continue to fight for the support of the orange electorate.

Because there has to be some kind of 'modus vivendi' established between the anti-crisis coalition and Cabinet of Ministers on one side, and President Yushchenko on the other, it is thought that NSNU could adopt a kind of 'semi-detached' opposition status.

But the stark reality now dawning on NSNU deputies is that there may not be much of a political future for NSNU at all. The President, with his recent appointments, has put some 'clear blue water' between his administration and NSNU. Viktor Baloha, the new head of the President's administration declared that Yuschchenko may be stepping down as NSNU's honorary leader. This may even be decided at an NSNU 'pow-wow' this Saturday..

If the Pres does does step down, it will be huge blow to the party and could provoke a major crisis amongst its ranks, so some other kind of link with the President will have to be formed and maintained.

The President will need a loyal political force to represent him in the VR also. NSNU is a creation of Yushchenko's - he is, to a certain extent, responsible for its welfare.[From 'Den']

Update: Interesting interview in 'Bez Tsenzury' today with deputy head of NSNU 'ispolkom' Ihor Zhdanov entitled,' The president will not turn away from his 'child'.

When asked about whether the pres intends to set up an alternative political project, he replies, "As a father of two children, [I can tell you] in order to give birth to a second child, you don't have to reject the first."

There are pointers there too on how NSNU envisage their future activities.

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