Viktor Yanukovych was inaugurated as the President of Ukraine today. Yulia Tymoshenko still insists that he is not her President. Prime Minister and members of her faction have even ignored the official inauguration events. Looks not very smart, imho.
But who will be the next Prime Minister? Has Yulia Tymoshenko any chance to save her chair? Here is some news on the negotiations inside Parliament:
1. The Block of Yulia Tymoshenko (BYT) has started to gather signatures of MPs to justify the current parliamentary coalition, the existence of which is rather questionable. (The Speaker of Ukrainian Parliament Volodymyr Lytvyn has demanded to prove the existence of current coalition before 2 of March, otherwise a new coalition shall be formed, or in 60 days Parliament will be dismissed according to the Constitution).
2. The BYT will definitely fail to gather 226 signatures; it is obviously seen after today’s sitting of the Our Ukraine – People’s Self-Defense (OU-PS) faction. Not more than 10 MPs from the faction would support Mrs. Tymoshenko premiership.
3. To form a new coalition (in order to avoid the early election) the Party of Regions and its leader Viktor Yanukovych need support of the OU-PS faction.
4. According to the info from today’s OU-PS faction sitting, the majority of MPs may support the coalition with Yanukovych party, but only if the ‘democratic Prime Minister’ is elected (i.e. not-member of the Party of Regions).
5. The candidacy of ex-President Viktor Yushchenko has been actively lobbied, and is in general approved by the Party of Regions. But the OU-PS faction (ex-pro-Yushchenko monolith, now split to little groups of interest) has not approved the Yushchenko-PM-scheme. Yet?
6. Today OU-PS MPs had discussed the idea to nominate ‘number 4’ in the first round of Presidential election Arseniy Yatseniuk as a future PM. He made a speech, which did not inspire the majority of veteran MPs as was made in Yatseniuk’s habitual paternalistic and moralizing style.
7. On Monday, 1st of March, the OU-PS faction will have the next sitting to approve the final decision. Before that they are going to negotiate with Yanukovych, and also with Tymoshenko.
8. It sounds surreal, but I think Viktor Yushchenko has about 80% of chance to become next Prime Minister – he is the most convenient for all (as nobody wants to keep the rating of Yatseniuk).
9. Though the PM’s chair is not a convenient place to seat in these days, due to the total crisis of Ukrainian economy and state finances, when the declaration of default is a very realistic outcome.