MP Kononenko leaving post of first deputy head of Petro Poroshenko Bloc faction, offering Abromavicius to pass lie-detector test together
First deputy head of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc faction Ihor Kononenko has said that he leaves this post for the time of the investigation into the accusations made by Economic Development and Trade Minister Aivaras Abromavicius and has invited Abromavicius to pass the lie-detector test regarding the voiced accusations together with him.
"With respect to the current situation and the accusations put forward against me by Economic Development and Trade Minister Abromavicius, I should make the following statement: Yesterday, I filed and officially registered an application to the National Anti-Corruption Bureau concerning the charges against me, asking it to conduct an objective investigation and punish those responsible. Secondly, I suggest and insist we should pass a lie detector test together with Abromavicius in connection with the charges made by him against me," Kononenko said in a video statement posted on YouTube.
In addition, Kononenko said he decided to resign as the first deputy chairman of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc faction for the time of the investigation. "I ask the faction to support me in this decision," the lawmaker said.
As reported, on February 3, Abromavicius announced his decision to resign because of a lack of support for and active obstruction of reforms being pursued by his team. Abromavicius accused MP Ihor Kononenko of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc of pressing on the ministry to appoint his candidates into agencies and state companies, said that the ministry was obstructed in nominating its candidates for government. "My team and I do not want to be a cover for blatant corruption, puppets for those who want to control public money the way this was done by the previous authorities. These people have names, and I will name one of them. This is Ihor Kononenko. Being a representative of a political force that nominated me for this post, he has done much over the past month to block my work and the work of the ministry," he said at a press conference in Kyiv on Wednesday.
Kononenko described Abromavicius' statement as "emotional" and as an attempt to shift responsibility for setbacks in the Economic Development and Trade Ministry's work on someone else. He dismissed the minister's accusations and explained them by plans of the government's rearrangement.
Detectives of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau on Wednesday started checking the facts presented by Abromavicius regarding the possible interference of Kononenko and other MPs into the work of the ministry, reads a statement posted on the website of the bureau. The bureau said that Abromavicius as a witness will be soon invited to the NAB to give evidences that he delivered at a press conference.
President Petro Poroshenko said after meeting with Abromavicius that he had tried to persuade him not to resign and that the minister was still undecided.