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Czech elections: despite the Pandora Papers Babiš will be hard to dislodge

Sean L Hanley5 October 2021

2021 was supposed to be the year that the Czech Republic’s billionaire populist Prime Minister, Andrej Babiš, finally came a cropper. Dogged by corruption allegations, fending off prosecution and under persistent fire from the EU conflicts-of-interests, the oligarch-turned-politician’s ham-fisted handling of the covid crisis caught up with him. Having bragged that early success controlling the pandemic made Czechs and Central Europeans ‘best in Covid’ – and trumpeted his own skills as a political crisis manager – by March this year Babiš was presiding over a country with the worst infection rates in the world, with his government’s record slated by experts and medical professionals.

But just days before parliamentary elections on October 8-9, and despite the bombshell Pandora Papers revelations about his use of offshore companies to buy property on the French Riviera, the populist billionaire seems to have every chance of hanging on  – and the outcome of the elections is uncertain. (more…)

Poroshenko Seeks Reelection

Lisa J Walters8 June 2018

Andrew Wilson, Professor in Ukrainian Studies

Ukraine is already in election year. Both the president and parliament chosen in the tumultuous year of 2014 are due to be reelected in 2019. The presidential election comes first, in March; the parliamentary elections are expected to follow in October. As always, there are rumours of some politicians plotting a different time or a different order. But, currently, the depressing prospect for the 2019 elections overall is that all of the major players will return. So none has an incentive to campaign for early elections. (Former Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has seen his party’s support collapse, but most of his team will jump on to other parties ae ‘life rafts’).

(more…)