Monday, September 22, 2008

Some sense from Kluyev

PoR deputy Andriy Kluyev was allegedly one of the darkest of the 2004 Orange Revolution election fraud plotters. Recently there have been stories in the Ukrainian media that he has been the main PoR liason man in efforts by one wing of PoR to assemble a new parliamentary coalition with Yulia Tymoshenko's BYuT following NUNS walk- out from their democratic parliamentary coalition with BYuT.

Kluyvev has written a well-reasoned article entitled 'Becoming a country of realized possibilities' for the current 'Dzerkalo Tyzhnya', which I recommend reading. He argues any coalition is better than the early parliamentary elections sought by president Yushchenko.

I've translated and paraphrased some portions below:

"Since 2004, in Ukraine, the authorities in power have practically not been able to function. The constant political stand-offs, both within the walls of parliament and between the President and the cabinet of ministers, have led to the disintegration of state institutions. Conflicts within the 'orange camp' are most apparent. The work of the organs of power organs and judicial is particularly politicized.

Politicians and ordinary citizens have become weary of this. The myth that inactivity of the authorities is good for the economy sounds reasonable, but is unrealistic."

Kluyev calls for a long-term development program to be written for the country to increase the quality of life of its citizens. The key tasks are to increase the lifespan of Ukraine's citizens by ten years and reduce mortality particularly amongst people of working age, reform public health services, modernization of the pension system, development programs for infrastructure, and improving the education system and science.

For this to be achieved the economy has to grow. In all of these questions the positions of the country's main political forces practically coincide. The reasons for differences lie in personal ambitions, and also in questions most of which concern the past.

The judical disintegration of the current unworkable "democratic" coalition forces the country's politicians either to negotiate and compromise, or to go again for senseless and unnecessary early elections. Today everyone recognizes that without a change in the legislative rules any elections will change nothing, but will only increase polarization and deliver a further blow to the economy. Therefore it is important to come to some agreement.

The [recent] renewal of the full operation of parliament [and the co-operation of PoR and BYuT] has shown that this can be productive, but it is is just a first step.

"I am sure that any working coalition will be more beneficial for the country than sequential elections. Moreover, from the point of view of the interests of the country, any configuration of those being discussed today would be acceptable. The coalition could even be 'technical' - just for solving the most urgent problems - the stabilization of the economic situation, and also for introducing legislation changes, which would make it possible to minimize conflicts amongst those in power.

It is at the same time obvious that creation of any coalition will be difficult, taking into account future presidential elections and ideological differences between main political forces, so that the probability of early parliamentary elections is very high. But soon after, the battle for the presidential post will begin, and the current crisis will automatically be prolonged by one-and-a-half years..which could result in social and economic upheavals comparable to those of the crises in the '90's.

The country's elites must finally understand that decline of the population and economic stagnation threaten the security of Ukraine considerably more than the artificially fanned conflicts with neighbours. We should put aside the topics causing conflict and concentrate on the main priorities. I'm pleased to say that understanding the importance of consolidation of the elites around productive aims is gradually filtering through to my politician friends. I hope that this understanding will give to the Ukraine chance to become a country of realized possibilities."

The main political groups in parliament have about 4 weeks to come to agreement on forming a coalition. Weighing heavily in their minds is how joining any such coalition could affect their ratings. Kluyev seems to be appealing for politicians to look at the broader picture - an honorable position for someone normally associated with sinister behind-the-scenes dealing.


Ukrtoday said...

I agree. If both BYuT and PoR and find accommodation and support to see Ukraine address the fundamental problems with the current system and bring Ukraine in line with other European states and adopt a full parliamentary system of governance then this is a step in the right direction. Yushchenko and the Office of the President is the main cause of division in Ukraine today and something has to be done to put an end to the Presidents reign of instability.

Yushchenko's power struggle is destructive and anti-democratic.

As long as Yushchenko remains in office Ukraine will continue to

Anonymous said...

Andriy Kluev is right on every account here. The idea of "to live and work together for benefit of the country despite differences" as a solution for Ukrainian problems is not brand new - it was a part of PoR program for the 2004 elections. But what makes the difference now is that PoR is closer to a common understanding of this idea with other parties than ever before. Hopefully, by today they all have grown up enough not only for a talk of ideas from tribune, but also will be capable to act along the lines of this idea in the same way as political forces in other countries do.

PS. I support the comment of Ukrtoday too.

UkrToday said...

As long as Yushchenko remains in office Ukraine will continue to suffer.

elmer said...

Kluyev does indeed sound sensible. He even states that productivity needs to improve, and gives an example from daily life - in supermarkets, the workers are not familiar with the products that they are selling, and service is poor.

Yanukovych sounded very nice, too, in his TV interview with Channel 5.

Here's the problem - all of this talk has been talked before, ever since 2004. Maybe not so much on the part of the Party of Regions, but all of this has been said before - and nothing has been done.

The Party of Regions, with this Kluyev article, is a newcomer to setting goals and priorities for the country, in talking about productivity, and actually trying to accomplish them.

But it is most certainly a long way from when Yanukovych called the people of Ukraine "beasts and cattle" in 2004, and when his wife called the Orange supported a bunch of narcomaniacs.

So is this just more talk?

He makes an excellent point - the "elites" ought to get together to work things out, because both the politicians and the populace are sick and tired of the constant political bickering and infighting, which is hurting the country.

And he echoes, in a way, what Yushchenko has said previously - corruption is killing the country.

And the do-nothing Parliament.

But it is still bothersome that he talks about an "elite."

The concept of an "elite" is antithetical to a democracy.

This is not all Yushchenko's fault, although he and Baloha have certainly contributed their share to the mess and to the political stalemates.