Ukrainian rock musician Svyatoslav Vakarchuk announced the creation of his own party "Voice", which under his leadership is going to take part in elections to the Verkhovna Rada in October of this year. Today, the artist held a presentation of a new political force - on a viewing platform near the Museum of Ukrainian History in Kiev.

According to the press service of the new party, the reason for creating a new political force Vakarchuk called the desire to update the Ukrainian policy. Not without a statement about the need to counter Moscow.

“At a time when Russia by its actions undermines our security and creates an existential threat from the outside, the old policy weakens the state from the inside. We must destroy the internal enemy and become strong in the face of the external enemy. That is why the Voice party goes to the elections to the Verkhovna Rada, ”Vakarchuk said.

The musician said that he intends to defend the interests of the citizens of Ukraine and the country's pro-European course, accession to the EU and NATO, to fight for the responsibility of the authorities and the economy without oligarchs.

According to Vakarchuk, the oligarchs did not give his party "a penny or a candy."

In the political program of the Vakarchuk party, published today, Ukrainians are promised: “preservation of the territorial integrity of Ukraine and return of the occupied territories”, “development of an innovative economy and small and medium business, increase in labor productivity”.

“Modern education and medicine, high standards of safety and ecology, fair retirement security and integration into global markets” are also among the tasks set by Vakarchuk’s party members.

The artist presented today several members of his team. It included the ex-deputy minister of economy of Ukraine in 2015–2016, Yulia Klimenko, the activist of euromaidan in Odessa, Solomiya Bobrovskaya, who in 2016–2017 headed the Odessa regional administration (formerly Mikhail Saakashvili’s deputy), Andrei Sharaskin, nicknamed “Boheme”, participated in the military actions in Donetsk airport and chairman of the organization controlled by Dmitry Yarosh, as well as the former head of the board of the international non-governmental organization Transparency International Yaroslav Yurchishin and cardiac surgeon Yuri Sokolov.

Rada again

The creation of the Voice party is the second attempt by a musician to try his luck in Ukrainian politics. In 2007, he went to the Verkhovna Rada according to the lists of Our Ukraine - People’s Self-Defense bloc of Viktor Yushchenko. However, a year later Vakarchuk left Rada, saying that politics is a “dirty business”.

Now the musician has decided to return to Rada. Speaking about the attitude towards President Vladimir Zelensky, Vakarchuk did not directly criticize him, but noted that "blind faith in the new president" is not for him.

“If the president proposes changes, we will advocate even greater changes. If he forgets his promises, we will make him answer to the voters. We need real changes, not imitations, ”the musician stressed today, introducing his team.

Before the first round of the presidential election in Ukraine, Svyatoslav Vakarchuk did not directly support any of the presidential candidates, but he urged voters to vote "not for fun", in fact repeating one of the slogans of the election campaign of Petro Poroshenko.

According to the results of the voting on March 31, the Deputy of the Parliament Sergey Leshchenko, then close to Zelensky, declared that “the only strategy for the embezzled president - the political bankrupt” is negotiations with Vakarchuk.

Ukrainian media associate Vakarchuk's campaign in Rada with the desire of the oligarch Viktor Pinchuk to get his group of deputies in the Rada. At least, the ICTV channel belonging to Pinchuk was the first to announce the musician’s intention to lead his party to parliament. In 2018, the American newspaper The Washington Times stated that Pinchuk and the notorious billionaire George Soros allegedly intended to nominate Vakarchuk for the presidency of Ukraine.

“Most likely, this is a project of the team of Petro Poroshenko,” commented on the political initiative of Svyatoslav Vakarchuk, Deputy Director of the Institute of CIS Countries Vladimir Zharikhin. - This is an attempt to create an alternative to the party of Vladimir Zelensky "Servant of the People". Vakarchuk has a close group of admirers with Zelensky, so his calculation is to take votes away from Zelensky. ”

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The RT source in Oleg Lyashko’s Radical Party shares the same opinion.

“Vakarchuk will become a competitor for Zelensky in parliamentary elections. They have a similar audience. And it is beneficial to Petro Poroshenko, because with Vakarchuk they have a good relationship. I do not exclude that in the next parliament they can unite into a coalition, ”the representative of the Radical Party commented on the situation in an interview with RT.

Rating contrary

Despite the high fame in Ukraine and abroad, Svyatoslav Vakarchuk can not boast a high rating. According to the survey of the Active Group Research and Communications Center, conducted last fall, when the prospects for his participation in the presidential elections were still discussed, 5.3% of respondents were ready to vote for the leader of the Okean Elzy group. The year before, he was much more popular. Then about 12% of Ukrainians were ready to support him.

  • The leader of the group "Ocean Elzy" Svyatoslav Vakarchuk
  • © Gleb Garanich / Reuters

Now, as follows from a fresh poll of the sociological group “Rating”, 0.7% of Ukrainians are ready to vote for the Vakarchuk party (0.9% of those who made the choice). For comparison, 29.5% can vote for the party “The Servant of the People” Vladimir Zelensky (39.9% - defined).

According to Vladimir Zharikhin, the Vakarchuk party, despite the weak rating at the start of the election campaign, has every opportunity to overcome the 5% barrier. However, sources of RT in Ukraine believe that the chances of the Golos party to get serious results in the elections to the Verkhovna Rada are extremely small.

“Vakarchuk missed his chance by refusing to participate in the presidential race. He could compete with Vladimir Zelensky. I consider that he will not achieve any special successes, - the RT source in the Batkivshchyna party declared. - People were waiting for his announcement of going to politics on Independence Day on August 24 of last year, and since then the rating of Vakarchuk has been constantly decreasing. His party will be difficult to overcome the five percent barrier to falling into the Verkhovna Rada. ”

Vakarchuk's promises are an attempt to flirt with the electorate. But people have already heard similar statements from Vladimir Zelensky and other politicians, this is no surprise to anyone, said the representative of the Popular Front Party in a conversation with RT.

“Vakarchuk’s team is not bad, but they can’t do anything. Vakarchuk’s ratings are too low to be considered, ”the source said.

In addition, as experts note, Vakarchuk is more popular in the west of the country. And given the nationalist position of the musician and his new political force, his electorate partially overlaps with the electorate of Yulia Tymoshenko and even Petro Poroshenko. So the musician can also become a spoiler for the party of the current president of the country.

“They are all spoilers for each other. And he is Poroshenko's spoiler, and Poroshenko is a spoiler for him, ”said Professor HSE political analyst Oleg Matveychev in a conversation with RT.

"They will make it worse."

In Ukrainian social networks, the new project of the leader of the Okean Elzy group was received with irony. Before the presentation of Vakarchuk, the Kiev journalist Vyacheslav Chechilo noted that Golos could turn into “the most disastrous patriotic project of the year”.

“I don’t know what Political Technologists have said to Vakarchuk, but the voter doesn’t have a request for clowns. Especially in his ultra-patriotic niche, ”the journalist emphasized.

In turn, the former Minister of Justice of Ukraine, Elena Lukash, compared the new appearance of Svyatoslav Vakarchuk on the political horizon with the life “after death”. According to the politician, during his short stay in the Verkhovna Rada last time Vakarchuk did not pay serious attention to lawmaking, but again decided to go to parliament.

"What for? Two more amendments and lunch in the parliamentary canteen? ”- Lukash mocks.

Vakarchuk's speech was also compared with “ape-making of theses of the Zelensky campaign”.

According to a RT source in the Samopomich party, Vakarchuk, like Zelensky, seeks to use in its favor the existing request in the Ukrainian policy for "new faces".

“The existing politicians have already gotten the people so much that people are ready to give the country to singers and showmen,” said the source RT.

In turn, Vladimir Zharikhin doubts that Zelensky and Vakarchuk will be able to change the lives of ordinary Ukrainians for the better.

“These people do not have even minimal experience in politics. They have a desire for change, but the question is whether they have the ability to translate what they want into reality, ”the expert emphasized.

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  • © Gleb Garanich / Reuters

* “The Right Sector” is a Ukrainian association of radical nationalist organizations, recognized as extremist and banned in Russia (decision of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation of 11/17/2014)