Translated by Ollie Richardson for Fort Russ
3rd February, 2016
The Minister of Economic Development and Trade, Aivaras Abromavicius has decided to resign.
He stated this on Wednesday at a briefing.
“I and my team have no desire to be a cover for outright corruption or controlled by puppets for those who want to use the styles of the old regime to establish control over public money. I don’t want to go to Davos to tell them about our successes, while behind us questions are answered in the interests of certain people,” he said.
“These people have names. And one of these names I’m about to announce. This is Igor Kononenko,” added the Minister.
“As a representative political force that nominated me as Minister, recently he has done a lot to block my work and the work of the Ministry. Firstly, Kononenko’s controlled deputies from BPP have aided the development of the decision on my resignation, using the opposition faction of “Vidrodzhennia”, and they eventually gave it to the Verkhovna Rada, where it only gathered 18 votes over several months,” he said.
According to him, Kononenko throughout the year, lobbied for his people for the position of Director of the company “Ukrhimtransammiak”, which had its own interests.
“Instead of helping me to overthrow Bondyk, affiliated with the Party of Regions, he brought his own men, who jointly governed the enterprise,” he said.
In addition, according to the Minister, Kononenko controlled parliament and lobbied for his people to control “Derzhzovnishinform”, a metal powder company, the National accreditation Agency of Ukraine and several other companies.
“This entire rampage culminated in Mr Kononenko’s desire to have his personal deputy minister of economy, responsible for Naftogaz and other state-owned enterprises”, – he added.
According to him, the candidate, after just two days, showed up with a full package of documents and declared himself the new Deputy appointed by the top.
“After that, I received a call from the presidential Administration with a strong recommendation to take this man and another to the post of Deputy Minister for defense. To which I replied: “I will not be part of this corrupt arrangement”, And offered for my dismissal”, – said the Minister.
According to Abromavicius, then Kononenko wanted to hear the Minister’s report on the BPP faction.
“I decided to relieve Mr Kononenko and his team of the burden of having to listen to my report, and therefore I tendered my resignation“, – he said.
Abromavicius said he was ready to leave the post immediately and not prolong the process by weeks or months.
“So I ask the Verkhovna Rada to vote for my resignation tomorrow,” he said.
According to him, last year, much was accomplished, however, the point of no return is yet ahead of us.
“The forces of evil want to rewind it all back. Let’s get rid of “looters” that milked the Ukrainian economy. Such people should not be in politics and in state administration”, – he concluded.
“This decision is not emotional. I think with this system I can’t be effective. I don’t have the proper support, I have to work with huge interference in the Ministry”, – he said, answering a reporter’s question about why he decided to stop fighting.
According to him, he established the best reform team in the Ministry of economy in the history of Ukraine.