Small business owners renew their protest
According to Ihor Hurnyak, Head of the Assembly of Civic Organizations of Small and Medium Business, his organization is from Tuesday beginning an indefinite protest demanding, among other things, review of the Tax Code. He says that large-scale rallies are planned in Kyiv, Lviv, Odessa, Kharkiv, Vinnytsa, Luhansk, Khmelnytski and other cities.
The protesters will be demanding an end to repressive measures against those who took part in the Tax Code Maidan (the protest on Maidan Nezalezhnosti or Independence Square from 22 November 2010 – translator), as well as guarantees that the simplified system of taxation for small businesses will be retained. They also insist that the draft Labour and Housing Codes should be withdrawn from parliament, and that a draft scheme for pension reform which I understandable for the public be drawn up.
Mr Hurnyak said that the Assembly has just sent a letter to the President setting out their demands and asking why he is creating the conditions for social upheaval.
During the large-scale protests which began towards the end of November last year, the protesters demand that the President veto the draft Tax Code which parliament had passed.
After several weeks of protest the President said that he was vetoing the Tax Code. The document was reworked and soon passed again. However many of the business owners say that the amendments made were superficial.
Those who took part in last year’s protest allege persecution by the authorities. Several have been charged with damaging the granite slabs on Maidan Nezalezhnosti in Kyiv during the protests. It is claimed that the slabs were damaged because demonstrators drop in metal rods to erect the tent camp.