HUNGER-STRIKE IN BID TO EXPOSE ELECTORAL RIGGING

Ukraine
08.10.10


The Press Service of the BYuT-Batkivshchyna party has issued a statement on the use of “administrative resources” being directed against Ukraine’s largest opposition party ahead of the 31 October local elections. According to a covering email, President Yanukovych and his allies have ordered the Justice Ministry not to register regional organizations of Batkivshchyna. It also states tha that the Ministry of Justice is granting Batkivshchyna party certificates to unknown groups while the Ministry of the Interior is issuing false seals. Election commissions are are now apparently accepting false lists of candidates from “party-clones.” The party says that all of this is taking place at under the supervision of the Chief of Staff of the presidential administration.

This policy of establishing bogus Batkivshchyna branches and registering them to participate in the election has already excluded Batkivshchyna from participating in four major regions: Kyiv, Lviv, Luhansk and Ternopil. To draw attention to what is a clear case of electoral fraud, Batkivshchyna’s regional organisations have announced a hunger strike stating:

"What have we come to! We, the people of Ukraine, are losing the independence that was won by millions of lives. We are losing our fundamental rights and freedoms, our culture, history, language, strategic state assets and our European perspective.

We can stop these humiliating developments only through fair elections. But today, it is obvious that a fair election, which means elections in principle, could become impossible in Ukraine. And if we now fail to protect people’s rights to elect we will never be able to protect Ukraine either!

The last six years have been difficult, but it is within this time that a real freedom and relatively fair election system were born. And now, Yanukovych is consciously and brutally destroying these gains.

It is obvious that the new Law on Local Elections establishes an unprecedented system of vote-rigging in Ukraine. These elections are just training and a trial run of the new cynical system of vote-rigging before the next parliamentary and presidential elections.

We are witnessing a real farce; in all election commissions – from central to territorial, and district election commissions – the majority that is loyal to Yanukovych has been secured. He also controls heads and seals of all the commissions. Such election commissions are granted the right to sign election protocols in “troikas” (triumvirates), as it was in Stalin’s time, without any effective observation. Similarly to 2004, Yanukovych established a procedure when it does not matter who votes and for whom, but it matters who “counts”, and draws a protocol.
Following the example of the CSPU, Yanukovych de facto implements a single-party system in Ukraine. Heads of educational institutions, hospitals, entrepreneurs, civil servants, candidates for mayors and deputies are forced to desert to the ruling party. If they refuse to do this they are thrown into jails, sacked, their business is destroyed through law-and-order forces, their families and children are intimidated.
Yanukovych is creating his single-party system by means of raiding influential organizations of the biggest opposition party “Batkivshchyna”. The Ministry of Justice grants the “Batkivshchyna” party certificates to unknown groups; and the Ministry of Interior issues false seals for them. Election commissions take false lists of candidates for deputies from these “party-clones”; the lists are made up by Mr. Liovochkin, head of Yanukovych’s presidential administration.

In such a way, the biggest opposition party “Batkivshchyna” has been already  excluded from the participation in the local elections in four regions of Ukraine: Kiev, Lviv , Luhansk and Ternopil.

If we do not stop this large-scale election fraud then we will never have elections in Ukraine again. We will have only an illusion of elections and the constant power of one person and his allies.

Today we announce a hunger strike to attract the attention of Ukrainian society and the whole world to the fact that now a dictatorship is being established in one of Europe’s biggest countries – Ukraine. Ukrainians often say that the USA and, unfortunately, the EU has made Ukraine a political currency in geopolitical agreements, and because of this they consciously turn a blind eye to the usurpation of power and violation of human rights and freedoms.

It has been called stability in a “gobbledygook” diplomatic language. A system of falsifications of people’s will has been called “fair and transparent elections”.  Annulments of Ukraine’s Constitution, which has been in force during the last six years, by the puppet Constitutional Court has been taken into account and has been called “a precondition to implement successful reforms”. Now we address not just the leaders of key countries but to their people, their journalists and their parliaments. We ask them to help Ukrainian people to defend our young democracy and Ukraine’s state sovereignty.

The whole world needs to stop this absurd, transformation of young Ukrainian democracy into a dictatorship in Europe of the third millennium.
We love our country, and we do our best to stand for its freedom. Now, Ukraine no longer has neighbors, no parliament, no Constitution, no elections and media freedom, we no longer look to international institutions that pretend to struggle for the strengthening of democracy and freedom all over the world.

Because of this, we announce a hunger strike and demand a return to fair elections and keep a chance for Ukraine.
Now we have only our lives, which we are ready to give for Ukraine."

 

 



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