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KIEV, April 04, /ITAR-TASS/. Budgetary spending on the early presidential elections in Ukraine scheduled for May 25 will be cut by 790.5 million hryvnias (about 70 million U.S. dollars), chairman of Ukraine’s Central Election Commission Mikhail Okhendovsky told journalists on Friday.
“These elections will cost Ukrainian state budget 1.174 billion hryvnias (about 105 million U.S. dollars),” he said.
“The Central Election Commission’s initial estimates put the figure at 1.965 billion hryvnias (about 175 million U.S. dollars).”
The sum was reduced thanks to the amendments to the country’s law on elections introduced by the Ukrainian parliament. “The Verkhovna Rada [Ukrainian parliament] ruled to reduce the number of member of district and regional election commissions,” a presidential contender is allowed to appoint,” Okhendovsky noted. “It also shortened the term of competences of regional and district election commissions after the polls.” Apart from that, he said, the volume of canvassing materials published at the expense of the state budget was also reduced.
At the same time, Okhendovsky pledged these changes would not tell on the electoral process.
On Thursday, Ukraine’s Central Election Commission finished registration of candidates to run for Ukrainian president in the May 25 snap presidential polls. As many as 23 people out of 46 who submitted registration documents were finally registered as candidates.
Potential presidential contenders were to submit their registration document to the Central Election Commission by midnight on March 30 and make an electoral pledge of 2.5 million hryvnias (about 236,000 U.S. dollars).
Nine registered candidates were nominated by political parties. Thus, former Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko was nominated by the Batkivshchina (Fatherland) party, former Defence Minister Anatoly Gritsenko - by the Civil Position party, former Minister of Revenues and Dues Alexander Klimenko - by the Ukrainian People’s Party, former Minister of Social Policy Natalia Korolevskaya - by the Ukraine-Forward party, Vasily Kuibida - by the People’s Movement of Ukraine (Rukh), Oleg Lyashko - by the Radical Party, Petr Simonenko - by the Ukrainian Communist Party, Oleg Tyagnibok - by the Svoboda (Freedom) party, and Dmitry Yarosh - by the radical organization Right Sector.
Other candidates, including oligarch Petr Porochenko, are self-nominees. Proroshenko, however, can count on the support from Vitali Klitschko’s UDAR party, and Mikhail Dobkin is backed by the Party of Regions.
Earlier on Thursday, Ukraine’s Central Election Commission considered the issue of granting registration to a representative from the Ukrainian Internet Party, Darth Vader, who took the image of the Star Wars American epic space opera character. His registration documents said he had been nominated by his party’s extraordinary congress of 208 delegates in the Odessa region on March 25. It turned out however that no mass events had been held in the Odessa region on that day. Apart from that, the Central Election Commission found that Darth Vader’s documents had been filled with numerous violations of the procedure, so he was denied registration. Moreover, the Central Election Commission asked the Prosecutor General’s Office to check his documents.