The holiday season has given way to the election season in Ukraine, with the presidential campaign having officially opened on December 31. And although a number of seasoned politicians have already thrown their hat into the ring, there’s one newcomer that has been making headlines in recent weeks.
Comedian Volodymyr Zelenskiy, better known for his on-screen portrayal of an ordinary teacher who ends up President after a video of his anti-government rant goes viral, officially announced his intentions to run for President of Ukraine on News Year’s Eve after months of speculation. Since then, he has taken to social media both inviting ordinary people to join his team, and asking them to list their top five concerns.
This unlikely candidate, with his already unusual approach to campaigning, may be in with a chance, according to the polls. He is currently ranking third, behind frontrunner Yulia Tymoshenko and incumbent President Poroshenko. But will this matter come election day? And with speculation surrounding his links to Ukrainian oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky, is he really a truly independent candidate?
On this week’s show we discuss Zelenskiy’s chances of success and what a Ukraine led by President Zelenskiy would look like. We are joined by CEO of NGO Center UA Inna Borzylo, Novoe Vremya journalist Ivan Verstyuk and Kyiv Post journalist Oleh Sukhov.