They may be out of power, but, for years, at least 20 former officials have enjoyed discounted rents on government dachas in the elite Kyiv suburbs of Koncha-Zaspa and Pushcha-Vodytsya. A June 4 presidential order mandated their departure, but not all of the tenants are willing to comply.
Current Time’s Yevhenia Tokar toured a few of the contested dachas, and spoke with one of the sanctioned officials, ex-Prosecutor-General Svyatoslav Piskun, who served under Presidents Viktor Yushchenko (2005-2010) and Leonid Kuchma (1994-2005).
Zelenskiy has stated that these 20 tenants, who also include a former deputy prime minister (Hennadiy Zubkov), are “far from the last” ex-officials who will be ordered to leave the state dachas. The president has claimed that “my people” will not use such residences.
A former deputy chairman of the Ukrainian parliament’s anti-corruption committee, Borislav Bereza, called ex-officials renting these state-owned dachas is “a relic of the past – a kind of blatantly Soviet [practice] that has remained.”
“Many officials in Ukraine use their position also after they’ve left office,” Bereza, now a blogger, noted. “That’s how the authorities settle accounts with them for their loyalty or for some deals, let’s say.”
While Bereza welcomes Zelenskiy’s order, he believes, though, that the move puts the Ukrainian president into an awkward situation. Zelenskiy himself also has access to a government dacha, though he has termed it a “temporary” residence for his family after he sold his own house in 2020.