Return to ten years of school education, unblock Russian social networks, abolish “inhuman” medical reform and put an end to the “armed conflict”. The main theses of Yuriy Boyko, official and real biography, the declared property and the ability of the politician to keep a promise – about this and more in the new section “Candidates” from Opinion.

We have created this section for you to have an opportunity to make conscious, objective and most importantly – your own decision in the presidential election this spring. Telling about each candidate, we turn to the official biography, open sources, emotionlessly scrutinize the program promises and the reality of their fulfillment. 

We have planned materials about 12 candidates who have the highest chances according to the data of sociological companies. To avoid manipulation, the texts order has been defined alphabetically.  

What is the candidate’s program this time?

This year, Yuriy Boyko’s program entitled “Plan of peaceful development for Ukraine” begins with the thesis that Ukraine has deviated from the basic tenets of the Declaration on State Sovereignty and the Declaration of Independence. The politician proposes to develop a future of the country, taking into account the state’s multinationality. In addition, he promises to stop the war in the East, calling it “hostile activities”.

1. Bring peace to Ukraine

According to Boyko, it is possible after fulfilling all international obligations and directing full attention to the end of the “armed conflict” (yes, not the war) exclusively by peaceful means. Therefore Boyko is ready to go on direct talks with all parties and abolish the “armed conflict tax”.

2. State at the service of people

In this point, Boyko proposes to increase the mandate of local authorities, creating municipal police and return free access to social networks and other information resources. The last subparagraph refers, probably, to the Russian social media platforms “Vkontakte”, “Odnoklassniki” and a number of other websites banned on the territory of Ukraine. In the same section – another interesting point: the politician promises that the state will not interfere with the church matters.

3. Real independence – thanks to a strong economy

In this section, the candidate promises a number of changes: increase of economic growth, the brake of prices’ growth, renewed link between science and production, and the establishment of a fair taxation system. However, for most promises, implementation mechanisms are not spelled out.

4. A decent life for everyone

Here Boyko promises to raise the living wage, salaries, and pensions, provide social assistance to all who need it and to stop the “tariff genocide”. Politician also cares about youth: he promises to introduce a transparent program for building a social life and to increase childbirth payments. Mechanisms of implementation are not specified at all.

5. Reforms for the sake of people

In this section, Boyko characterizes medical reform in Ukraine as “inhuman” and promises to repeal it. A pension reform is also unfair for the candidate, and it also should be changed. A separate subdivision is an education, here Boyko is going to renew ten years of school education, to return the right of citizens to study in their native language and “to stop the shameful closure of schools”.

6. Ukraine is a reliable international partner

Yurii Boyko is convinced that Ukraine should be a neutral and non-aligned state, which has no tension with all countries, in particular, with Russia.

Let’s recall: in accordance with Article 106 of the Constitution of Ukraine to the basic powers of the president of Ukraine belongs presentation of the state on the international arena and state’s defense. All the other issues are subject to appropriate departments.

What can we know about him from the CEC and his personal website?

On the web site of the Central Election Commission, they don’t tell a lot about Yuriy Boyko, as well as about other candidates: he was born in the Donetsk region, has a higher education, registered in Luhansk, and despite being a member of the Opposition Bloc, he runs for the presidency as a self-nominee.

Somewhat more information you can find at the official site of the Opposition Bloc. Until recently Boyko was its co-chair. The first higher education degree the candidate obtained at the Moscow State University of Fine Chemical Technologies, and the second one – at the branch of the East Ukrainian National University.

After looking at the published information, it may seem that his political career had started when he headed the Ministry of Fuel and Energy in 2006 and his first election as a People’s Deputy in 2007. The highest position in the government, which was held by Yuriy Boyko is Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine. However, the membership in political parties is mentioned only once: On May 27, 2016, this presidential candidate has been elected as a co-chair of the Opposition Bloc.

What wasn’t mentioned in the party biography?

In fact, Boyko came to politics much earlier, he joined Serhiy Tihipko’s party Trudova Ukraina, which at that time was associated with the incumbent president Leonid Kuchma. It is interesting that it was Kuchma, who granted Yuriy Boyko the title of the Hero of Ukraine and the Order of Merit (second class).

The next step is the presidency in the Republican Party of Ukraine in 2005 and the election as a People’s Deputy of the 6th convocation on the party lists of the Party of Regions.

It was the government of Mykola Azarov that appointed Yuriy Boyko as a Minister of Fuel and Energy in 2010. And after the reorganization of the office, Yanukovych extended Boyko’s mandate to a de jure new, and de facto, the same post. With the help of the same Yanukovych’s signature, today’s presidential candidate began occupying the post of vice prime minister. However, things didn’t work out with the Party of Regions and Boyko was expelled in April 2014 by the decision of the political council.

After that, in September of that year, the politician headed the Opposition Bloc – the actual reincarnation of the Party of Regions. However, something went wrong here as well: last autumn, Oleksandr Vilkul, from the rostrum of the Verkhovna Rada, announced the exclusion of Boyko and Levochkin from the ranks of Opposition Bloc.

As it became clear later, such a decision was made because of “betrayal of the voters’ interests.” Apparently, it happened because of the creation of the party Za Zhyttia, which was not coordinated with the Opposition Block.

What does the candidate own?

Looking at infographic, presented by the team of the resource “Slovo I Dilo,” which was created based on the official declaration of the candidate, it becomes clear that Yuriy Boyko is a little bit low on money, however, it can’t be said about the cash assets of his family members, where they operate with millions. Actually, the same situation is with real estate, movable property and unfinished construction objects.

What did the candidate promise to make during the last presidential elections?

In the special presidential election in 2014, Boyko also took part as a self-nominated candidate. So at the very beginning of his previous program, at the beginning of 2014, politician stresses that it was the hardest time during the entire period of independence, the country may disappear, and the people were on the verge of civil conflict.

Among the main promises:

  1. To save the integrity of the country and ensure mutual respect between the West and the East;
  2. To destroy the total corruption that has become a disease from the past;
  3. Ensure broad powers of local authorities;
  4. Set new social standards;
  5. To defend Ukraine’s proper role in the international community and to develop ties with global partners.

It should be noted that in his program Boyko asserted that Ukraine should have two official languages: “Our diversity is the key to development. Therefore I will make every effort to save it. The two official languages – Ukrainian and Russian – will become a guarantee of the equality of our rights to the models of Europe and North America.”

He also emphasized that economic relations should simultaneously be conducted both with the European Union and with Russia. Recall that the elections of 2014 took place after the annexation of the Crimea and the occupation of the part of Donetsk and Luhansk regions by Russia.

How does this candidate keep his promises?

According to the research of our colleagues from the resource Slovo I Dilo, the number of unfinished promises of Yuriy Boyko is almost twice as big as those which he still managed to fulfill. So out of 168 promises, Boyko managed to realize only 52, 24 are still in the process, and 92 were not fulfilled.

In particular, the politician had lied promising that his faction would support the initiative on the introduction of the peacekeeping mission. He could not repeal the pension reform after going to parliament, did not contribute to the process of decentralization of power and did not modernize the Ukrainian army.

Among kept promises there are the refusal to vote for the budget of 2019, voting against the UOC-MP’s shift to the UOC, ignoring the law on the anti-corruption court and the appeal for the abolition of medical reform.

Are there any scandals with the candidate?

Yes, the loudest of scandals even bear the name of the candidate himself. “Boyko’s towers” – this is how the media dubbed the scheme that, in March 2011, the state-owned company “Chornomornaftohaz” paid over 150 million USD to a firm with a fake owner when purchasing two drilling oil platforms.

Yuriy Boyko also enjoys participating in fights in the Verkhovna Rada. A fight between the presidential candidate and Oleh Lyashko became well known. Most recently, when People’s Deputies voted for the renaming of the UOC-MP in the Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine, People’s Deputy Bereza taught Boyko a lesson, although Nestor Shufrych took a punch.

Text by Dmytro Zhuravel

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