17.11.2004 | Oleksandr Stepanenko, Chortkiv

The Ternopil oblast. We say “power” and mean “administrative resource”


On 8 October 2004 a special session of the Chortkiv district council was not carried out because of the absence of quorum. The session was initiated by a group of deputies and called in accordance with the Law “On local self-government” with the aim to turn the attention to the illegal cases of use of administrative resource during the Presidential election campaign. In particular, the facts were mentioned of meddling of the officials of district state administration into the course of pre-election agitation, as well as the facts of biased attitude to placement of informational materials from different candidates to presidency on the side of editorial board of the district newspaper “Golos narodu”, founded by the district council and the oblast state administration.

In the draft of the decision presented for consideration of the session the members of initiative deputies’ group pointed at participation of the head of the Chortkiv district administration in pre-election agitation, in particular, in favor of Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovich, which violated the Law “On election of the President of Ukraine”. So, the state officials regularly escort the empowered persons of V. Yanukovich during the meetings with labor collectives, give instructions on placement of corresponding agitation stands on fronts of state and communal enterprises, exert pressure on the heads of budget organizations, “proposing” them to carry out the agitation in favor of the pro-power candidate, openly agitate for him on the pages of district newspaper “Golos narodu”, etc. Publications in this edition are absolutely subordinate to the goal of creation of media illusion of nation-wide support of politics of the President and government. At the same time “Golos narodu” is silent about the really mass public actions conducted by Chortkiv inhabitants in the support of opposition candidate to presidency V. Yushchenko. In the mentioned draft of the decision of the district council it was suggested to the organs of executive power, organs of local self-government and mass media to stop the violations of election laws. Yet, as we see, the draft was not approved by the district council.

It is indicative that none of deputies-state officials came to the session of the district council, as well as the heads of budget organizations, state or communal enterprises. The town mayor and village headmen, who are usually invited to plenary sittings of the district council, were not present too. Undoubtedly, breakdown of the session was planned by state officials, and it was proposed to the deputies to avoid the discussion by the council of the “inconvenient” political question.

In similar way, that is by means of manipulation by the actions of deputies, who depended on the power, two sessions of the Ternopil oblast council with the political agenda were deranged in 2002-2003. Evidently, the practice of impudent meddling of presidential administrations into the work of organs of local self-government is quite usual in the Ternopil oblast during several last years. It seems that the power cannot imagine its existence without the use of administration resource in all its forms.

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