2019 was a super election year in Ukraine. The presidential elections took place on March 31st. The parliamentary elections were originally scheduled for October 27, 2019. After the inauguration of President Volodymyr Zelensʾkyj, the parliament was dissolved. The early parliamentary elections took place on July 21, 2019.
Presidential elections 2019
After the first round of the presidential elections on March 31, 2019 were two candidates in the runoff Volodymyr Zelens’kyj with 30.24%, an actor and owner of film production companies, as well as the current president Petro Porošenko (15.95%). Zelensʾkyj is a political newcomer and, like his opponent Porošenko, a supporter of the pro-Western course. Both missed an absolute majority. Around 30 million Ukrainians who were eligible to vote voted from 39 candidates, including Julija Tymošenko and the candidate of the democratic forces, Anatolij Hrycenko, who came in third and fifth, respectively.
In the second ballot on April 21, 2019, the turnout was 61.4%. The 41-year-old Volodymyr Zelensʾkyj won with a convincing majority (73.2%) and left Porošenko far behind with 24.5%. The Ukrainians gave the old political elites a lesson by electing a president who had no experience in politics for the first time in almost thirty years of independence.
The official election results were announced by the Central Election Commission of Ukraine on April 30, 2019. The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, which observed the presidential elections with 808 representatives, recognized the elections as free and fair.
Volodymyr Zelensʾkyj is the sixth President of Ukraine. He is the youngest president in the country’s history to date and won the elections by the greatest distance to any previous president. After taking office, he dissolved parliament and announced the new elections, which his party “Servants of the People” won with an absolute majority. Not a single president has so far achieved such a strong concentration of power. With one of his first official acts, he lifted the parliamentary immunity.
Parliamentary elections 2019
Early parliamentary elections were held in Ukraine on July 21, 2019. The turnout was 49.84%, the lowest in Ukraine’s history. Five parties overcame the 5% hurdle: the presidential party Sluha narodu (Servants of the People) 43.16%, opposition platform – For Life 13.05%, All-Ukrainian Association “Fatherland” by Julija Tymošenko 8.18%, European Solidarity by Petro Porošenko 8.1% and Holos (vote) by Svjatoslav Vakarčuk 5.82%. The newly founded party of President Zelensʾkyj “ Servants of the People“By winning 247 out of 424 seats. This party achieved success in all areas of Ukraine except Lviv, it was elected by many Ukrainians regardless of language, region, age and social status.
323 MPs were elected to parliament for the first time. Many newcomers prevailed against the political establishment and regional oligarchs who had been represented in parliament for several terms. 20.52% of all MPs are women.
The parliament began its work on August 29, 2019, elected the Prime Minister and his deputies as well as the cabinet.
The 35-year-old lawyer and political novice Oleksij Hončaruk was elected Prime Minister.
Law and order
The political system of Ukraine is based on a presidential-parliamentary government order. The legislature is represented by the Verkhovna Rada, the Ukrainian parliament. The president and the government form the executive. The President has far-reaching powers and can dismiss the Prime Minister or individual ministers against the will of the parliamentary majority. The direct election by the people also gives the president a strong position. The judiciary is represented by the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court of Ukraine.
The draft of the Ukrainian Constitution was adopted on June 28, 1996 by the Verhovna Rada (Ukrainian Parliament). June 28th is an official holiday in Ukraine. The basis of the Ukrainian constitution are human rights. It is based on four principles: the rule of law, democracy, separation of powers and popular sovereignty. Article 1 reads as follows: “Ukraine is a sovereign and independent, democratic, social, law-bound state”.
Ukraine was ruled centrally until the Maidan Revolution in 2014. On April 1, 2014, a decentralization law was passed by parliament. The law provides for more powers to be delegated to the regions. The decentralization reform is supported by the European Union, Denmark, Estonia, Poland, Sweden and Germany (GIZ).
According to holidaysort, Ukraine is a country located in Eastern Europe. Ukraine is divided into 24 administrative areas (oblast ‘): Kyїv oblast’, Vinnycja, Volyn ‘, Dnipro, Donec’k, Žytomyr, Zakarpattja, Zaporižžja, Ivano-Frankivs’k, Kirovohrad, Luhans’k, L’viv, Mykolaїv, Odesa, Poltava, Rivne, Sumy, Ternopil ‘, Harkiv, Herson, Hmel’nyc’kyj, Čerkasy, Černivci, Černihiv. Other political units are the cities of Kyv (capital) and formally Sevastopol ‘as well as the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, which were annexed by Russia in March 2014. The largest cities of the regions form the administrative centers, the so-called regional centers (oblasnyj centr). The administrative centers of the Luhans’k and Donec’k areas are located on occupied territories, so they were moved to Severodonec’k and Kramators’k.
The areas are also divided into districts (rajon). The smallest administrative units are rural settlements (smaller and larger villages). Since the decentralization reform that was passed in 2015, several rural settlements can merge to form territorial communities (municipalities).