Long has this blog regularly and repeatedly raised issues, mostly nefarious but also political, surrounding the Head of the State Fiscal Service (SFS), Roman Nasirov.
That is has written nothing supportive or even neutral regarding Mr Nasirov is due to the fact he is a nefarious, scheming and odious individual that should have long since been removed from office – had political circumstance allowed for it.
Perhaps the kindest words written about him have been that he consistently reaches his figures required by the State budget – which are hardly kind words.
In private conversation with Ukrainian politicians and the international diplomatic community there has ne’er been anything more positive said about him than the sentiments expressed in the proceeding paragraph.
A reader may therefore decide to infer that all comments in such private conversation where he has been mentioned have painted a rather dim view of him by way of his shenanigans as the head of the SFS – notwithstanding the politics that have kept him in office despite his shortcomings. No doubt many a diplomatic communique paints a rather grim picture of Mr Nasirov – and rightly.
On 2nd March, and not before time, NABU (the Ukrainian Anti-Corruption Bureau charged with tackling ingrained naughtiness within the nation’s political and institutional elite) have eventually got around to tackling Mr Nasirov.
He has been formally informed of criminal investigations against him (abuse of power resulting in grave consequences) relating to his alleged involvement in the on-going and prolonged Alexander Onishchenko saga – now in self-exile from Ukraine and wanted for gas related corruption issues.
To be fair, if private yet learned conversation is any guide, this would be but one of several investigations to which Mr Nasirov should be subjected to. Time will tell if yet more investigations follow. They should.
Regardless, that he has finally been arrested should lead verily to much rejoicing – albeit arrest is a far cry from conviction within the justice system suffered by Ukraine.
That the Finance Minister, who has increasingly suffered Mr Nasirov, swiftly took the opportunity to rally Cabinet colleagues to suspend Mr Nasirov from his role pending the investigation “for the benefit of both Mr Nasirov and the investigation” is telling.
Meanwhile, Mr Nasirov during his arrest displayed the time honored act of suddenly falling ill. He may be relatively young, but clearly he has learned no new tricks, relying on the usual attempted mockery of the system.
For those readers who follow Ukraine closely, if Mr Nasirov appears to be far more rotund than he was when he first took on the role of SFS Chief less than 2 years ago, perhaps a determined grazing upon fois gras is to blame – if possibly financed within a lowly civil servants salary – as clearly trips in opaque circumstances to the Trump inauguration do.
Nevertheless, this is Ukraine, a nation where sackings are often not sackings – all too regularly leading to tragicomic Yo-Yo employment. (Yes the Labour Code needs a serious and immediate overhaul.)
Ergo Mr Nasirov’s suspension is a suspension for how long? Until the investigation ends, or until a dodgy judge rules the suspension somehow unlawful?
The answer to that on this occasion can perhaps be found in the acting replacement for Mr Nasirov. Miroslav Prodan, an experienced State tax official who hails from Vinnitsa will now take on the acting role of heading the SFS.
A reader may now be (cynically) asking just who has their political power base in Vinnitsa – and wondering how that will be (rightly or wrongly) perceived. So too perhaps will Mr Nasirov.