Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Ukraine: President Zelenskiy urge party members to take polygraph test amid bribery allegations

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has urged members of parliament’s Finance Committee to take a polygraph test in the wake of bribery allegations.

Zelenskiy, who is currently in Japan, said in a post on Facebook on October 23 that the allegations were “an attempt to discredit” his ruling Servant of the People party.

“I will not allow anyone from the [party’s] representation [in parliament] or from outside to cast a shadow on the political force that obtained a majority mandate from the Ukrainian people,” Zelenskiy wrote, calling on all members of the parliamentary Committee for Finances, Taxation and Customs Policies to take a polygraph test.

“If that test reveals even the slightest possibility that any of the lawmakers took bribes for their votes in the committee, then anti-corruption agencies must deal with them. Honest and unbiased investigation must remove all of the questions and give answers, no matter how bitter they may be,” Zelenskiy wrote.

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Ukrainian media reports from earlier in the day said that 11 Verkhovna Rada lawmakers from Zelenskiy’s party had accepted up to $30,000 each in undue benefits for voting against a bill to eliminate corruption schemes to allegedly benefit property companies linked to another lawmaker.

Ukraine’s Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office announced on October 23 that it was investigating the reports.

Zelenskiy, who won the presidential election in April, has vowed to fight endemic corruption in the country.

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