Sunday, August 12, 2007

Central Election Commission fires starting pistol at BYuT

Yesterday the Central Election Commission rejected BYuT's list of candidates for the September 30th VR elections, ostensibly because they hadn't filled out their forms properly - omitting address details, even though they had been included elsewhere. BYuT claim they submitted their forms exactly as for previous elections. Midnight 10th August was the deadline for submission of lists. As things stand, BYuT cannot take part in the election so this is a big crisis already.

BYuT are challenging the CEC's decision in court, as permitted by the Ukrainian laws on the CEC procedures.

What is it all about? My guess is that the bureaucrats in the CEC are being very 'picky', and the pro-PoR [and possibly NUNS] members thought it would be a good opportunity to rub BYuT's nose in the dirt. Maybe the CEC is just 'flexing its muscles' to show how tough it can be..

Yulka, quite naturally has called the CEC's decision outrageous. Some commentators are saying that it the crisis was deliberately engineered by BYuT themselves in order to gain sympathy of voters. BYuT are especially strong in Kyiv, and if things are not resolved in days, say by next weekend, highly publicized protest demos could raise BYuT's popularity to higher levels.

The CEC have the power to change their own decisions by themselves [according to Article 12, para #7 of the above-mentioned laws] or on the basis of court judgements. Legal challenges are permitted according to Article 12, para #8. The CEC comprises 15 members - 7 CEC members voted to accept BYuT's list, and 7 abstained, so there is some 'wriggle room' to resolve the dispute.

If NUNS leaders stand idly by, it may look as if they are colluding with PoR to gain BYuT's votes. One of their leaders could intervene - delicately criticizing BYuT for not being more scrupulous, but nevertheless supporting their legal challenge. LEvko thinks maybe by mid-week, or before next weekend, BYuT's list will be registered.

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