Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Ukraine: Dismissal Of The Presidential Secretariat Head Oleh Rybachuk

KIEV, Ukraine -- First of all, I would not seek reasons for the dismissal of Head of the Presidential Secretariat Oleh Rybachuk in Viktor Yushchenko’s desire to strengthen the control over his team.

Oleh Rybachuk

President Viktor Yushchenko pursues other objectives through making this decision. The key objective is to strengthen the President’s political positions that have been narrowed due to the constitutional reform.

The dismissal of Oleh Rybachuk took place when Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych’s team was stepping up their activity and Yanukovych tried to extend his influence over the spheres that used to be the President’s prerogative.

So, Rybachuk’s dismissal can be regarded as the Ukrainian President’s counterattack on the Prime Minister.

Apart from that, the change of the Secretariat Head was caused by considerable reduction of the agency’s influence. The present Secretariat is utterly different from the Leonid Kuchma’s Administration.

Kuchma’s Administration controlled certain spheres quite successfully, while the present Secretariat lost all those functions.

It is of importance for President Yushchenko to enlarge the Secretariat’s sphere of responsibility. It doesn’t mean the return to Kuchma’s model of Presidential Administration, though. Given the current situation it is impossible, and one should not even try to do that.

President Yushchenko wants to restore the presidential status. After the parliamentary elections of March 2006 the coordination of actions of all the government branches and bodies was overset. The Verkhovna Rada could not get assembled for a long time, the regional councils made decisions neglecting central authorities, and the law enforcement agencies were engaged only in their own business.

In a word, one had an impression that the President had lost his control over the situation in the country.

That’s why the Secretariat makes a point of using the remaining presidential powers in the most effective way and making them more substantive. I believe that the first initiative will be the strengthening of the executive chain of command at the regional level through restoring the control over the human resources management in the regional Administrations.

This is one of the reason why former Minister of Emergencies and Affairs of Population Protection from the Consequences of Chornobyl Catastrophe of Ukraine Viktor Baloha, who has vast managerial experience and is considered to be an efficient manager, has been appointed the Head of the Presidential Secretariat.

This appointment may be followed by other important reshuffles. One can expect that new officials will come to the Secretariat and new Deputies of the Secretary of the Council of National Security and Defense will be appointed in the near future.

Source: Eurasian Home

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