Vacations of the elect: How most prominent MPs of last convocation live?

Author : Natalia Lebed

Source : 112 Ukraine

The peculiarity of the Ukrainian government is that, having entered it, it is rather difficult to reject this status. It’s like the Buddhist wheel of samsara - an endless rotation of transformations: today you are in one party, tomorrow in another, but always an MP
14:25, 7 January 2020

Verkhovna Rada of the IX convocation
Open source

The basic core of the political elite remains almost unchanged, only the names of parties and factions change. Although there are transitions of a different kind: from the legislative branch to the executive branch or vice versa.

This is exactly what happened with some MPs of the previous convocation: without getting into parliament, they found themselves in official positions.

However, some still are on the sidelines, but with the hope of restoring the status quo. We decided to find out what happened to the most prominent representatives of the Verkhovna Rada of the VIII convocation.

Eurooptimists do not lose optimism

The previous convocation turned out to be rich in journalists and activists. They were generously poured into almost every fraction. But perhaps the most recognizable trinity went to the “Petro Poroshenko Bloc”: by its lists, Serhiy Leshchenko, Mustafa Nayem and Svitlana Zalishchuk got into the Rada.

They all went into politics with faith in change and their own organizational skills. “I tried to unite the young politicians three times. Three times!” - said Mustafa Nayem in an interview with Hromadske.

These attempts were not entirely fruitless: at least in 2015, the Eurooptimists inter-factional union arose in the Rada. In addition to Leshchenko, Nayyem and Zalishchuk, it included two and a half dozen MPs.

"Eurooptimists" increasingly harshly criticized the then power and painfully hit the hand feeding them. Later in 2016, Nayyem, Zalishchuk and Leshchenko joined the party "Democratic Alliance" of Vasyl Gatsko. By the way, Mikheil Saakashvili also entered the Demalliance.

However, subsequently the paths of the “Eurooptimists” diverged both with the ex-president of Georgia, and with Gatsko and his “Demalliance”.

At the beginning of 2019, all three left the Poroshenko’s faction. Then there were attempts to “join in” with Holos party of Svyatoslav Vakarchuk and the team of the current president, Volodymyr Zelensky.

However, both Zelensky and Vakarchuk swore allegiance to the "new faces", and the "Eurooptimists" did not belong to those. Therefore, the 2019 parliamentary elections bypassed our trinity: Leshchenko and Zalishchuk tried to run in single-member districts, but lost the race.

Serhiy Leshchenko became a member of the Supervisory Board of Ukrainian Railways. According to sources - with a salary of half a million hryvnias (20 000 USD) monthly.

His friend and colleague Mustafa Nayem worked as Deputy General Director of the Ukroboronprom State Concern.

On December 2, Nayem received 310 521 hryvnias (12 420 USD) of salary at the place of main work, and this is already official, because it is such an amount indicated in his declaration.

As for Svitlana Zalishchuk, she also received a post. The ex-MP is now an adviser to the Prime Minister of Ukraine on foreign policy issues.

Front-line soldiers: Clean machine gun and grow tomatoes

But the people from Narodnyi Front faction are a little different. It also lacked activists and simply some Euromaidan faces. In addition famous combatants joined its ranks. Where are they now?

Andriy Teteruk, the former commander of the Myrotvorets battalion, does not seem to have a specific occupation, although he often acts as TV expert.

But the ex-commander of the Dnipro-1 Special Forces regiment Yuri Bereza after the resignation returned to his hometown and took a political pause, doing household work.

"I have one and a half thousand ducks! I make my own delicious wine. I bake my own bread. I grow tomatoes, cucumbers and much more. I even have fish, huge sturgeons," he informed.

Not a combatant, but Maidan fighter Mykhailo (“Cossack”) Gavrilyuk, having miserably lost the 2019 election (only 0.56% of the votes in Irpin), also seems to gravitate to pastoral life.

After long ignoring Facebook, Gavrilyuk appeared on his page with the following message: “I have a good life without a mandate! I returned to the calm life that I had before and which I liked. I spend time with my family, move a lot, and recover my physical form, which I’ve lost 5 years of sedentary work, I continue to study and work on myself and think about the future. In recent years my life has changed a lot, and now I finally have time to comprehend it. "

But Tetiana Chornovol, his fellow colleague and another victim of the Yanukovych regime, went to the Rada by party lists. But her MP career was over. Although she does not want to live calm everyday life. In early December, she recorded a video in which called for further struggle.

"Ukraine is successfully fighting. But even if the struggle was hopeless, you still need to fight. Because when you fight, you have at least a chance, because when you fight, you don’t fall into despair," said Chornovol in her video.

For greater conviction, the eternal revolutionary put on a bright red dress and took a black automatic machine. It turned out spectacularly.

Related: Verkhovna Rada finally restricts MPs' parliamentary immunity

But comrade of Chornovol Serhiy Pashinsky (also an ex-MP of Narodnyi Front) can hardly afford such tricks. Since mid-December, he has been under house arrest.

The former parliamentarian was forbidden to leave the house in the village of Khotiv in Kyiv region. We recall that this prominent representative of the Ukrainian establishment was charged with causing grievous bodily harm to a citizen.

The shooting case, in which Pashinsky was involved, was closed back in the days of Poroshenko, but was restored under Zelensky.

Samopomich party: complete reprogramming

Of the MPs that were part of the Samopomich, it is worth recalling ex-combatant Semen Semenchenko (commander of the 2nd Special Forces Donbas Battalion) and ex-journalist Yegor Sobolev.

They became friends and did a lot together. For example, together they left the fraction (it was in the spring of 2019). And earlier - together they blocked trade with the uncontrolled Donbas territory (or rather, tried to do it) and opposed the Roshen factory.

Before the 2019 early elections, Semenchenko refused to run for parliament. "Staying in the Rada now does not help, but hinders me in the struggle for Ukraine.

If you are not a member of the governing coalition and do not agree, the system will block your authority, no answers will come to your requests, and your bills will not be on the agenda for years. But for many people you’re one of the four hundred and more “assholes from the Verkhovna Rada,” he wrote on social networks.

What forms the struggle for Ukraine acquired is still unknown. But Sobolev, who also obviously decided not to be an “asshole,” is actively working on self-realization in a completely new field for himself.

“I want to learn programming,” he said on Facebook. “The digital world is changing the real world so rapidly and revolutionaryly, from transport to politics, that I don’t want to be ignorant anymore.”

“In addition, this is an honest way to make money,” Sobolev added, saying that in the process of training he repeatedly scolded himself as a “donkey”. Well, “Samopomich” brought up not only MPs who were able to help themselves, but also very self-critical personalities. This cannot be said about our next heroes.

"Radicals" and "Julians": a little of pocket safari and a little of TV

The biggest intrigue regarding the former MPs is the answer to the question of how they live now.

Unfortunately, in most cases (unless it is a question of returning to the civil service), MP’s sources of income are shrouded in mystery. What, for example, does the ambiguous Igor Mosiychuk from the Radical Party do? Judging by the posts on Facebook, he replenishes its exotic collection.

“My new New Year’s rhino,” Mosiychuk shared a photo on FB. The former parliamentarian collects rhinos, and he received his last one from his wife, and the previous from the Radical Party leader Oleg Lyashko.

Looking at this toy zoo, you can’t say that a former UNA-UNSO activist and former deputy commander of the Azov volunteer battalion is in front of you.

Meanwhile, another ex-combatant, a former commander of the Aidar battalion and a former member of the Radical Party, which he voluntarily left after joining the Voliya Narodu group, is engaged in a less infantile affair.

Ex-radical Serhiy Melnichuk, obviously, became a media man, he is often represented in the expert pool, in particular, on the ZIK channel.

The television career is being made by another bright representative of the previous convocation - Nadiya Savchenko. And also on ZIK. Obviously, there is no need to recall the ups and downs of Nadiya’s stormy biography.

The former first number on the Batkivshchyna election list has been hosting a show on ZIK since September last year (and before that, Savchenko worked on NewsOne). By the way, Savchenko also has its own YouTube channel, but it is not too popular - only 1.4 thousand followers.

And with this obvious flaw, she could be helped by a former colleague in Batkivshchyna, a former journalist, a participant of Euromaidan and a war veteran Igor Lutsenko.

Moreover, he seems unlikely to be overwhelmed with work from morning to night. Lutsenko became an adviser to the mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko. That is, he returned to social activism and the Kyiv theme, which Igor worked on until 2013.

“What I conceived about two months ago, in the end, happened. The Anti-Corruption Council under the city head operates,” Lutsenko boasted at the end of December.

“The Anti-Corruption Council is such a platform where people who have their own experience in the real fight against corruption have the opportunity to communicate with the leaders of the city authorities and jointly propose solutions to overcome corruption,” he explained on Facebook.

In one paragraph

This article will mention Volodymyr Parasyuk - a man who, you can say, turned the tide of history, intervening in the events on Euromaidan at the most dramatic moment.

Parasyuk went to the 2014 elections as a self-nominated candidate in the Lviv region, and subsequently did not join any of the factions. The extra-fractional Parasyuk was remembered for epic fights - both within the walls of the parliament and outside it.

He also tried to take part in the 2019 elections, but the CEC refused to register him because of "improper deposit." Now Parasyuk has practically departed from political life. Periodically on social networks, he publishes photos and videos from leisure and football.

Another famous self-nominee, Dmytro Yarosh, is resting. There is probably no person in Ukraine who would not hear the phrase “Right Sector” and would not associate him with the power wing of Euromaidan.

He registered the party of the same name after the victory of the Revolution of Dignity, but in 2015 he left his political force, having founded the Sovereign Initiative of Yarosh social and political movement.

Being so proactive, Yarosh was surprisingly inactive in the walls of parliament - there he was recognized as one of the largest truants of the Rada. What is Yarosh doing now?

According to the Ukrayinska Pravda, most of the time he is in his house in Kamenske, Dnipropetrovsk region, engaged in a family and rising his grandchildren. He also heals a wounded arm.

It is impossible not to mention such an extravagant MP as the representative of the Poroshenko’s Bloc Oleg Barna. Actually, fame goes to everyone in different ways, and Barna became famous thanks to grabbing the groin of the then prime minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

The parliamentarian did not pursue any intimate goals, but merely pushed the head of government away from the rostrum. It is interesting that Yatsenyuk himself maintained complete equanimity during the incident, but the leadership of the party didn’t like the act of Barna - the MPs was expelled from the faction.

At the moment, Barna is recovering from parliament (this is how he formulated it in the comments to “Left Bank”), but does not want to talk about further plans - he is afraid to jinx it.

But Olga Bogomolets (also a Poroshenko’s Bloc member and an ardent opponent of Ulyana Suprun) - seems not to be so superstitious. She returns to the profession and promises to take up two important (without irony) areas - the development of military medicine and the development of new methods for identifying the bodies of victims by DNA.

Still, everyone should be engaged in the business in which he is best. Ex-MPs have space for the implementation of their knowledge and skills.

Related: Parliamentary committee recommended Verkhovna Rada to adopt law on land market

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