Books on Ukraine
Update No: 322 - (25/10/07)
Timoshenko to head new government
Ukraine's former premier Yulia Timoshenko is to form a new government, it was
proclatmed on October 24, after President Viktor Yushchenko had agreed to back
her for the post of prime minister.
The parties of the 2004 "Orange Revolution" that swept Yushchenko to
power, managed to gain a tiny majority at an election three weeks previously,
ahead of the party of the president's rival, Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovic.
She said the new government's first tasks would include removing privileges for
parliamentarians and altering legislation curbing the president's powers.
Earlier, Yushchenko said Timoshenko's bloc and the pro-presidential Our Ukraine
party had submitted an agreement to form a coalition and said he was ready to
confirm their proposed prime minister.
The two "Orange" parties hold 228 seats -- two more than are needed to
win most votes -- after the September 30 election.
Rivalry between Yanukovich, who bounced back from his 2004 reversal to become
prime minister, and Yushchenko, had brought on political paralysis, which this
election was meant to solve.
Yushchenko urged the Orange camp to formulate a government quickly. "Let me
remind the political forces that this is a matter to be dealt with in timely
fashion," he said.
"The public is expecting, at the first parliamentary sitting, the election
of a speaker, the approval of key documents and the appointment of a government.
This is the logical sequence of steps."
The Orange camp will have to wait for the first sitting of parliament -- as yet
unscheduled -- before they can propose a coalition government and prime
minister, which then needs to be accepted by the president and passed by
Parliament has to hold its first session within 30 days after the results of the
election are officially published. The results have been announced but are not
The Yanukovich factor
Yakunovich, whose party remains the largest in the new parliament, said a
"one-colour" government would be ineffective.
"The balance of political forces at the moment is such that this is
practically impossible," he told a cabinet meeting. "We will pursue
efforts to unite Ukraine so that people can live in stable fashion and the
government can work effectively."
Yanukovich discounted suggestions a new election might prove necessary if
parliament were unable to sit, if for instance, opposition deputies refused to
take their seats.
He has previously said he would go into opposition if he did not keep his job as
He has advocated a "broad coalition" between his party and Our
Ukraine, a notion touted by some commentators as a way to bridge traditional
differences between nationalist western Ukraine and the Russian-speaking east.