From lustration to nepotism?

November 11, 2014

Whether or not the lustration law will work as intended, regular readers will know there is more than a little doubt – depending upon the intent of those implementing the law of course.

In Odessa, a few weeks ago, three regional prosecutors were sacked under the lustration law – and quite rightly too, as they certainly fitted the parameters.


But – and there is always a but – the first known replacement is a lady called Tatiana Viktorovnu Gornostaev.  She is indeed an experienced prosecutor.  She is also known to Odessa, having held positions within the Odessa Prosecutors Office – as well as positions in the Kyiv Prosecutors Office and the Prosecutor Generals Office.

Pretty good going for a career that began in 2005.  She is, perhaps, indeed gifted in her chosen profession and no finer prosecutor could there be to fill the vacancy.

Alternatively, and perish the thought, the 9 year career may very well have been “assisted”.  Ms Gornostaev happens to be the daughter of the Deputy Prosecutor General of Ukraine – Viktor Shokin.

As stated above, Ms Gornostaev may be absolutely the best candidate for the role, but whether she is, or whether she is not, a large number of the citizenry are going to call “nepotism” – and in an environment where reforms are yet to materialise, such an appointment screams to certain parts of the Ukrainian constituency that very little is likely to change.  If she is not the best candidate and lustration is going to lead to nothing more than nepotism, cronyism and more deals behind closed doors over dubious senior appointments, the current RADA and whatever government is formed, will not last until Easter.

The political class in Kyiv need tread very carefully with all new appointments.  The ice upon which they skate is far thinner than it appears.

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