Article 87 of Ukraine’s Constitution guarantees first-year immunity to the government. It also says that during one parliamentary session the question of the Cabinet’s dismissal cannot be considered twice. Thus, Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk seems to have time until the fall of 2020 or even longer. But this is in theory.
In reality, "Ukrainian politics gives unlimited possibilities," Andriy Zolotariov, head of the Third Sector Center, comments. "If there is a political decision to conduct resignation of that country's Government, they will find a legal reason for this. Or not legal, but psychological, that is, they will make Honcharuk leave by himself," he assures.
Yes, the only way to get rid of Honcharuk is to force him to write an application to resign from the office at his own request. The experts agree that the current PM would not oppose the wishes of president Zelensky.
“I think if the president puts pressure on Honcharuk, the latter is unlikely to start fighting with the president - the PM is not an independent figure here. Of course, everything will also depend on agreements with a group of people, which nominated Honcharuk, financial sponsors of Ukraine. If these sponsors agree, then everything will be decided quickly and easily," Bohdan Petrenko, deputy director of the Ukrainian Institute for the Study of Extremism, is convinced.
Actually, Volodymyr Zelensky himself promised to sum up the work of the Cabinet at the end of the year. However, the year is almost over, and no one was examining the ministers.
“Honcharuk did everything possible to get fired. A simple example: industrial production has been falling for the sixth month in a row. This means an industrial recession; not a total economic recession, because there is also the agricultural sector and the services sector, and they “save” the situation," Oleksiy Kushch, financial analyst, says.
MPP Consulting analyst Pavlo Melnyk pays attention to other circumstances. In particular, he underlines the consequences of the artificial strengthening of the hryvnia, and the desire of the government to please the voter, who is still dreaming of the cheap dollar.
Why the bad government could be good?
"It is unlikely that Honcharuk will resign – Zelensky is completely satisfied with him. There is no political usefulness in this. Zelensky looks both solid and adequate against the background of Honcharuk. If he puts a strong prime minister, it will not be too good for him," economist Oleksandr Ohrimenko supposes.
Other experts note that Zelensky needs Honcharuk not so much to shade himself, but to become a later ritual victim.
“People see that the current government is a bunch of freaks and serve as an irritant of public opinion,” Andriy Zolotariov comments. “Therefore, February-March will be decisive for the Cabinet because then its fate will be determined. Maybe, the resignation would not be total."
Political analyst Kyrylo Sazonov says about some fluctuations: "We see that the ratings of the Cabinet of Ministers, the Verkhovna Rada, and the president are falling. This is due to economic problems, salary delays, and therefore the president will need some kind of sacrifice. But the head of the Cabinet of Ministers and ministers are the best candidates for resignation, this is always liked by the voter."
However, if the composition of the government is subjected to pinpoint rotations or is completely changed, the authorities will face one difficulty. “The question will be how to form the new Cabinet. In September 2019, the Verkhovna Rada worked in a “crazy printer” mode and voted for everything that the president proposed. Now other factions will demand giving offices for their own representatives to strengthen their own influence. And in this situation, probably, the Servant of the People faction will be unable to prove itself as a mono-majority. And this will lead to a reformatting of the coalition - perhaps with the participation of Vakarchuk's Holos party,” Bohdan Petrenko notes.
“Ihor Kolomoysky does not have that influence, which he used to have at the beginning of autumn. Therefore, the new government might consist of those people who helps other influence groups strengthen their positions,” Kyrylo Sazonov states.
It seems that the question of the resignation of Honcharuk’s government is only a matter of time. "So far, the Cabinet of Ministers is coping with its task of delaying negativity from the president," Petrenko believes.
However, there is another point of view. Director of the Institute for Global Strategies Vadym Karasiov notes that when speaking about the resignation of Honcharuk and his team “we have more speculation than real scenarios.”
However, there is a certain plan "B." If Honcharuk fails to satisfy the aforementioned "financial and industrial groups," then the current prime minister will be replaced. And Karasiov sees Arseniy Yatsenyuk as a candidate for such a replacement. “Many consider Yatsenyuk a good prime minister. Moreover, he has good relations with international groups, as well as domestic business circles. Some seriously think about how to turn him back to the office,” the expert says.