Poroshenko could win presidential election today


The only real question in today’s presidential election is whether Independent candidate Petro Poroshenko, better known as the Chocolate King because of his confectionary business, will be able to win in the first round today or will be forced into a second round runoff on 15th June.

Poroshenko has the support of Vitali Klitschko’s Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform of Vitali Klitschko in the election.

Although the election is likely to be severely disrupted in the east of the country as the civil unrest by Russian leaning separatists continues, OSCE international observers have suggested that this should not affect the validity of the result. The Chairman of the Board of Committee of Voters of Ukraine is reported in the UKR Inform press agency website as saying that between 5% and 7% of the vote will be lost in the east because of the uprising. Interfax reports that as of 15.30 on 22nd May the work of 18 of the 34 election commissions in Donetsk and Luhansk regions had stopped fully or partially. Some news agencies are saying that has increased to 20 election commissions.

Russian Federation President Putin has indicated that he will work with whoever is elected as the next President of Ukraine saying “We will respect the choice of the Ukrainian people and will be working with the authorities formed on the basis of this election” according to Reuters.

There were originally 23 candidates who had submitted their names, but that has been reduced as a result of withdrawals.

The only list of registered candidates we could find is as follows:

Olha Bogomolets; Independent supported by the Socialist Party of Ukraine
Yuriy Boyko; Independent
Mykhailo Dobkin; Party of Regions
Andriy Hrynenko; Independent
Anatoliy Hrytsenko; Civil Position
Valeriy Konovalyuk; Independent
Vasyl Kuybida; People’s Movement of Ukraine
Renat Kuzmin; Independent
Oleh Lyashko; Radical Party
Mykola Malomuzh; Independent
Petro Poroshenko; Independent supported by UDAR
Vadim Rabinovich; Independent
Volodymyr Saranov; Independent
Serhiy Tihipko; Independent
Oleh Tyahnybok; Svoboda
Yulia Tymoshenko; Batkivshchyna
Dmytro Yarosh; Independent

In the latest opinion polls Poroshenko has 45% of the vote and the only other candidate in double digits is Yulia Tymoshenko of the All-Ukrainian Union “Fatherland” (Batkivshchyna) who is on 13.3%.

There are around 36 million eligible voters but around three million voters in the east may not be able to vote. Voting will take place between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. local time.

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