Yatseniuk 0, Poroshenko 1 – but who’s counting? On February 16, the Cabinet of Ukraine, led by Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk, lived to see another day after the Rada failed to pass a vote of no-confidence. A flurry of political declarations sprouted ahead of the fatidic vote when the Rada factions of the BuYT, Samopomish and even the Bloc of Poroshenko (BoP) called the Cabinet’s results unsatisfactory. The last blow came from President Petro Poroshenko himself when he personally asked Prime Minister Yatseniuk and General Prosecutor Viktor Shokin to step down “in order to restore trust in the government”. Poroshenko also requested a complete and thorough overhaul of the Cabinet (importantly with the participation of the People’s Front), citing that “surgery is needed” in Ukrainian politics.
Yet surgery failed to happen on February 16, and a cosmetic display of political theatricality took over in Kyiv. After the Rada managed to gather 159 signatures to proceed with the vote of no-confidence, MPs overwhelmingly rejected, with 247 votes, the report of the government presented by Yatseniuk in the afternoon. After a good 90 minutes of political statements depicting the bad results of the Cabinet, the Rada then proceeded to pass resolution n°37 on the resignation of the Cabinet, but failed by a margin of 32 votes. The resolution was only accepted by 194 MPs, whereas a minimum of 226 votes was needed to approve the motion. Yatseniuk therefore remained in place, at least until the next possible vote of no-confidence – which cannot take place before the end of the current session of the Rada, namely after July 2016.