The Kyiv-based Penta think tank director Volodymyr Fesenko believes Inna Bohoslovska’s decision to quit the Party of Regions and run for president as an independent candidate is the result of growing tensions within the PR, UNIAN quotes the expert as saying.
“Bohoslovska’s decision indicates a stand-off existing within the PR. It seems that Inna Bohoslovska has failed to win support within the party (she joined the PR in 2007). She strives for more active policy, and, apparently, in pushing for a more prominent role for herself, had to come to grips with the party’s hardcore elders. This is what might have spurred her decision to part ways with the PR and start on her own. It seems to me, however, that she has exaggerated her popularity among Ukraine’s voters,” Fesenko said.
Fesenko ruled out that I.Bohoslovska may be a pseudo candidate, entering the campaign to win some votes from Yulia Tymoshenko and thus benefit Viktor Yanukovych. “Election is competition. If I. Bohoslovska runs, she will steal the votes from Yanukovych. I think, her decision is explained by her overblown ambitions. When she jumped on the Region’s bandwagon, she expected to gain some weight in the party. As these expectations did not come true, she preferred to act on her own,” Fesenko claimed.
Fesenko assumed that Bohoslovska will position herself with the interests of the Ukrainian middle class voters. She will also try to cash in on the Russian language status, lobbying for Russian-speaking Ukrainians. It is in this segment that she will have to persuade traditional Yanukovych voters.
However, Bohoslovska won’t be able to win much support in the presidential election. “I don’t think her war chest is big enough for effective campaigning. It is unclear what organizations or businesses will back Bohoslovska. Her own party, Viche, is in shambles and can hardly be rejuvenated,” the expert believes.
Fesenko believes Bohoslovska was advised to quit the PR and become an independent candidate by her spin doctors who say the need for new blood may give a chance to newcomers like her. Bohoslovska will run against the formidable Yanukovych, and her chances of winning any sizable voter support are minimal, he concludes.