MP Firsov announces his withdrawal from Poroshenko Bloc faction
Member of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc faction, chairman of Donestk regional organization of the UDAR party, Yehor Firsov has announced his withdrawal from the faction.
"This decision was very difficult to me I approached it carefully, mulled it over a few days, but realized that I have no other option. I'm leaving the Petro Poroshenko Bloc fraction," Firsov wrote in on the Ukrainian Truth website on Monday morning.
According to him, this decision was primarily due to the situation around deputy head of the faction Ihor Kononenko. "To be honest, I wanted to leave the faction on the day when it did not support the decision to revoke Kononenko's mandate... I can no longer stay in the faction together with Mr. Kononenko because I do not agree to cover his corrupt activities and do not want to be associated with them," the parliamentarian said.
Firsov noted that "after the vote on Kononenko's issue I realized that most of my colleagues in the faction deliberately cover corrupt schemes of 'the new family', and they do so even when our journalists and Western partners speak openly about this corruption." "I see the Petro Poroshenko Bloc fraction, thanks to several people, confidently repeat the path of the Party of Regions," he said.
"Ihor Kononenko is withdrawing millions of euros from Ukraine through shady offshore. His partner, another member of our faction Oleksandr Hranovsky has received 700,000 dollars in cash from his business partner Adamovsky, which he did not declare. And all this is happening amid the talk of reform, investment and the fight against corrupt schemes of the previous regime. Of course, I did not stand for MP to participate in this disgrace," Firsov said.
Another reason for his withdrawal from the faction, was the decision of the leadership of the UDAR party to merge with the Poroshenko Bloc before the election, Firsov said. He noted that he didn't support this idea from the very start. "Ordinary party members were not asked whether they agree to the union. Unfortunately, the party that I really liked and into which I put a lot of my time and energy, was just sold out and liquidated, like a commercial company would. And, apparently, members of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc believe that once the UDAR party has been sold out, then we must keep silent as bond-slaves and press the buttons together with them without thinking, fulfilling the orders from upstairs. I do not agree to play such a part," Firsov said.
"The problem is that my opinion means nothing within the faction. The Poroshenko Bloc Faction is controlled by several people, who are close to the president. They suppress any criticism and dissent. I am not the only one who tried to object... Natalia Novak, and Serhiy Leschenko and Mustafa Nayyem, Viktor Chumak and Svitlana Zalyschuk regularly speak in the same vein. But even today it is clear that their names and their reputations were simply used by the crooks to get more votes at the elections. We are just plainly ignored, when we are talking about corruption and demand to investigate crimes in this area," he said.
"I was among the first to sign up for the dismissal of [Ukraine's Prosecutor General Viktor] Shokin. But the president made it clear that he would not dismiss the prosecutor general no matter what. I spoke at a meeting of the faction on the elections in Kryvy Rih, where the Poroshenko Bloc immediately recognized the elections despite the fraud. I raised the issue about the structure of government, when we were given ready-made solutions from the presidential administration. Also, I was talking about replacing members of the Central Election Commission, who adopted the infamous decision and have already reached the end of their tenure. When I spoke of corruption and criticized Kononenko… I was broken off by Yuriy Lutsenko, who demanded that I should address the National Anti-Corruption Bureau... I did so, but I haven't got any response so far," the lawmaker said.
At the same time, Firsov noted that there still remain enough "adequate people" in the Petro Poroshenko faction, who can change much both in the parliament and in the county through taking open and honest stand.