News Politics, 06/10/2020

Veteran vs Rookie Candidates Run for Kharkiv Local Elections

According to the decree of the Ukrainian Parliament “On Scheduling of Local Elections” dated July 15, 2020, the local elections will take place on October 25 in the country.

Regular local elections will have a number of important features. This year, the local elections are organized in accordance with the new territorial division. Due to the enlargement of districts consolidated to 136 down from 490, the elections will be held in the newly formed territorial communities for the first time this fall. Thus, Ukrainians will elect community councils and deputies to the formatted district councils this October.

On January 1, 2020, the new Electoral Code came into force which significantly changes the rules of local council elections.

Voting under the majority system will only be held in territorial communities with a population comprising up to 10,000 people. In this case, the self-nomination of candidates is possible. From two to four people (formerly only one person) can become deputies from one constituency.

Elections to local councils of settlements with a population from 10,000 will be held according to the new proportional system with open lists, without the possibility of self-nomination of candidates. Deputies who overcome the 5 percent barrier will receive seats in local councils.

The ballot papers format for current local elections will look different. In addition to choosing a party from the proposed list, the voter will be able to vote for a specific candidate from the political party. The district bulletin from each party will list the names of five to 12 people.

Gender quota is another innovation of current local elections which provides for at least 40 percent of members of the same gender. That is, there must be at least two women among every five candidates on the party list.

Who runs for mayor in Kharkiv?

Hennadiy Kernes

The current Kharkiv mayor is running for the position for the third time. This year, he goes from “Kernes Block ‘Successful Kharkiv’.”

On October 10, Kernes was diagnosed win COVID-19 and had been treated in a local hospital No 17. On September 17, he was transported to the German clinic Charité where he is currently getting treatment.

Oleksandr Feldman

Feldman runs for elections from the “Opposition Platform – Za Zhyttya (For Life).” He is MP for several mandates. Prior to his career in politics, he was engaged in business.

Oleksiy Kucher

The current head of the Kharkiv Regional State Administration represents Sluha Narodu (Servant of People) president’s party. He got a parliament seat at the latest parliament elections. Before starting his political career, Oleksiy Kucher practiced law.

Mykyta Solovyov

The head of Demokratychna Sokyra (Democratic Hatchet) party is a Kharkiv activist, has a technical degree, the author of several courses in physics. He also graduated from the Yaroslav Mudryi National Law University, took part in the elaboration of several draft laws.

Ihor Chernyak

Chernyak runs for the Kharkiv mayor with the team “Bloc of Yulia Svitlichna ‘Razom’ (Together).” [Kh.O.: Yulia Svitlichna is the ex-head of the Kharkiv Regional State Administration, current MP]

He is an ex-deputy of Kharkiv city council, has a law degree, practices law, managing partner in ACF PARTNERS company.

Oleh Abramichev

The candidate for the mayor position from the Yevropeyska Solidarnist (European Solidarity) party. [Kh.O.: The party of the ex-president of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko.]

Since 2014 Oleh has collected and delivered aid to the Ukrainian army and civilians in Donbas.

Oleksandra Naryzhna

She will take part in the elections from the Holos (Voice) party. [Kh.O.: Holos is a liberal and pro-European political party in Ukraine which was led by Ukrainian musician Svyatoslav Vakarchuk.] Naryzhna is a social activist and an urban architect.

Taras Sitenko

He announced his participation in the local elections as a self-nominated candidate.

Sitenko is a head of the Samopomich organization in Kharkiv, the current deputy of the Kharkiv city council.

Since 2015, he’s been the head of the building company and involved in social activities.

Text: Natalia Ivanova

Photo: Anna Berezina