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The Dawn of Ze Ukraine: Twisting, Turning Poroshenko Continues to Lose Ground in Polls

Challenger Volodymyr Zelensky and the incumbent President Petro Poroshenko, preparing for battle.

Sergey Belous, Helga Green & Alexandra Renard
21st Century Wire

Everybody knows the saying that politics makes strange bedfellows, but politics also sometimes turns the public   figures that happened to be in the same boat and rowing towards their common goal into enemies. Exactly this happened to Vladimir Zelensky, Ukrainian comedian, who leads the large field in the Ukraine’s presidential election with close to one-third of the vote after the first round, and the runner-up, Petro Poroshenko.

In the spring of 2015 Zelensky’s company produced an animated cartoon, in which then newly-elected President Poroshenko was portrayed as “Porro,” a superman-style leader of the besieged country in the mould of Zorro, who efficiently and effectively defeated evil Putin. The cartoon was a great success with the wide Ukrainian audiences, who had great expectations and believed every word of Poroshenko’s lavish promises of imminent peace and prosperity for the war-worn and corruption-weary country.

However, today Zelensky and Poroshenko are on the opposite sides of the barricades, and the prospects of the incumbent President seem to be quite gloomy. That is in spite of tremendous efforts – his personally, along with his team that includes (besides the obvious state structures) a vast claque of NGOs and devout media outlets and bloggers – to rig the elections in favour of the incumbent Poroshenko.

Whenever anyone tries to describe the ongoing Ukrainian Presidential elections as rigged, there is a loud outcry from the mainstream media and official circles of the West, condemning such opinions as “pro-Kremlin disinformation” and dismissing any evidence which goes against their tidy picture of Ukraine as “the onslaught of democracy in the post-Soviet space”.  We will take the liberty of illustrating this message with a large quote from “EU vs Disinfo” website:

Summary of disinformation: During the Ukrainian presidential elections, electoral fraud is inevitable, because planned networks and various pyramids, voter fraud, purchase of votes by various foundations, funds and so on, have already been worked out. The Ukrainian government always has the most opportunities for election fraud. Disproof: According to the recognised Ukrainian Watchdog-Civil Network “OPORA” and the preliminary observation results, the presidential election in Ukraine on March 31, 2019 “took place in a competitive environment and in compliance with basic standards of genuine elections, whereas cases of breaking national law failed to present any constraints for citizens to exercise their right to vote and be elected.”

The preliminary assessment of the freedom and accountability of the elections by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe is also positive».

 Oh, well! Of course, we must believe Opora, the organization sponsored and supported by USAID and the Council of Europe (as the NGO proudly claims on its website), and we should not believe the facts reported by dozens independent observers and journalists! To spite of the MSM, we will try to expose the seamy side of Ukrainian presidential election.

According to GALLUP, only 9 per cent of Ukrainian citizens trust the authorities, which represents the world record for ‘mistrust’ in any national government registered for the second year in the row! Even ex-president Yanukovich, ousted in February of 2014, had a trust level of 24 per cent in the very twilight of his career. And, as the research data of the reputable Kiev International Institute of Sociology (KMIS), publicized in the fall of 2018, states that 78 percent of Ukrainians consider that their country is moving in the wrong direction. In addition, in a poll conducted by Rating Group in summer of 2018, showed that financial conditions of some 60 per cent of Ukrainian citizens worsened. These figures testify to the fact that Ukrainian society is yearning for change.

Taking into account such sentiments, it is not surprising that personal ‘anti-rating’ of President Poroshenko (the rate of distrust) is at 69 per cent, according to the Rating agency poll conducted in March of 2019. That said, it remains an enigma as to how, in spite of all the mistrust and weariness of the population, he did manage to make it to the second round of the general election. Lots of sociological data analyses predicted him in third place. Ukrainian journalists even suggested that with the use of administrative resource the President had “driven up” the figure by 5 per cent (although it was possible to reach a better result, but Poroshenko decided to save it for the second round).

Let us review the facts and technologies that the journalists and analysts succeeded in detecting, as this is really a burning issue now, on the eve of the second round. Considering Poroshenko’s desperate situation – and, in accordance with the latest research, his opponent, showman Zelensky, will have 71 per cent of the votes, and Poroshenko – only 29 per cent (Rating, April), then one might expect that all possible electoral fraud technologies will be used in order to shorten the gap. There is no scoop here, as the preparation work was done practically openly. Ukrainian journalists have thoroughly investigated all potential rigging plots and analyzed the election results using various mathematical methods, and based on the most likely possible scenarios, have made the following conclusions as to what could possibly happen:

1. Mysterious ballots. The Gaussian curve of the diagram reflecting the turnout was anomalous in certain constituencies: it consisted of peaks and valleys, testifying to the occasions of staffing of sham ballots. At that, the percentage of votes in favour of Poroshenko was much lower at the precincts with lower turnout, than at those with higher turnout. For example, the part of voters in favour of Poroshenko was 5,7 per cent within the range of 20-55 per cent turnout, and at the constituencies with 60-65 per cent turnout 8,1 per cent of the voters voted for Poroshenko.

2. Electoral pyramids. This is a kind of Ukrainian tradition. Votes have been bought in Ukraine for as long as elections were held. Nevertheless, Poroshenko’s team has developed an unprecedented system of votes purchase by way of the electoral pyramid. It is headed by the central headquarters, the second tier consists of constituency fixers, who, as a rule, are MPs. Each constituency is divided into 10-15 sectors. Each sector is headed by a person in charge: the local council president, an employee of the district administration, the head surgeon of the hospital, or the headmaster of the local school. The sector heads, in their turn, should pick 10-15 people for each polling station: teachers, doctors, social workers. And finally, those in charge of the polling stations choose 10-20 people, one for each block of apartments or a dozen of houses in a settlement. They are also mostly budget sphere workers, but also those, who had been earmarked in the course of sociological polls as potentially ready to sell their votes. Each of them provides for the consent of at least five more voters. Purchase of votes is carried out by way of “the agreement with an adherer”. “The adherer” receives a plastic card by post containing a QR code. Having activated the card, the voter acquires the initial payment – about 20 €. He is promised the same amount after he verifies his vote with the help of the same QR code. According to Ukrainian journalists, the network is active in about 150 constituencies and is able to bring Poroshenko nearly two million votes. It is symptomatic that after the failure of the electoral pyramid in Odessa Region, Poroshenko sacked the Governor, Maxim Stepanov, and the official later claimed that the cause of his dismissal was the unsatisfying result of the first round.

3. Bribery of voters by funds taken from the state budget.
We will give only one, but a very convincing example (in fact, this technology was widely used, and could be used at full-capacity in the course of the second round). Police conducted a full-scale search on the premises of the Town Council in Vasylkiv of Kiev Region, where the officials are suspected of buying votes in favour of Poroshenko. The investigation found out that the Town Council had allotted subsidies to the amount of 4,5 mln UAH to 4879 persons within the framework of “Turbota” (“Care”) social aid project in the course of three months, although in 2018 the number of the needy was three times lower. What a strange coincidence: the difference in the number of votes for Poroshenko and Tymoshenko in the 1-st round was exactly 4879 in favour of the incumbent President! The aid was received predominantly by the retired people; they were given sums of 30-150 €, although, as the inspection found out, a big part of them did not have the documents necessary for receiving the subsidy, and hundreds of applications, filed allegedly by various persons, were in one and the same handwriting!

4. Elections under the SBU surveillance. SBU (Security Service of Ukraine) agents kept vigil by the “Election” electronic system in constituency electoral committees, in the rooms, where the data of the protocols were entered into the main database. The access to these rooms is limited. Observers, even the international ones, are kept out. The system administrator is working in the presence of 5-7 SBU agents! This is the first such incidence in the history of Ukrainian elections.

5. “Tunnel” technology. It is carried out with the help of a proxy server that allows interference into the program already at the stage in between the entrance of the data that arrived to the district electoral commission as a protocol with a wet stamp, and delivery of the figures to the Central Electoral Committee. The technology is called “TunnelIPsec.”  This coded channel for the transference of data “from point A to point B” can be used for the swap of figures. CEC receives the corrected data and “honestly” announces falsified results. This way the stuffing of the so called “dead souls” ballots was legalized in the course of the first round (the “dead souls” are the deceased persons, whose names are still on the voters lists).

These are only some of the methods which could be used by Ukrainian officials in order to retain power.  Nevertheless, Western leaders preferred to hypocritically close their eyes to any such “mischief”.

Thus, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said: “In the eyes of the OSCE these elections were honest and transparent, and this is a great step on the road of reforms. Of cause, there was certain amount of criticism, expressed by the OSCE, and it should be taken seriously, especially in view of the second round and the forthcoming parliamentary election”. She added that the EU and the OSCE expect transparent electoral process during the second round.

In spite of Zelensky’s 2.5 times rating lead over Poroshenko, the latter persists in his efforts which many believe is to try and win by hook or by crook, and all the while carry on claiming that he “has all the grounds to hope for the victory”.

This makes us wonder, what other sleazy deals will this incumbent president enact in order not to turn into a lame duck on April 21st? Hopefully none, but in the event there are any irregularities, you’ll know who should be questioned first.

READ MORE UKRAINE NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Ukraine Files




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