Luxury holiday: Poroshenko under fire
A heated debate has erupted in Ukraine after a report about President Poroshenko's recent Maldive holidays was aired on the TV programme Skhemy. He allegedly spent roughly 500,000 dollars on a six-day holiday with his family on a private island. The show also speculated that he travelled using falsified documents. Is the trip the president's private affair or did it jeopardise public security?
War is no time for a luxury holiday
The very idea of Poroshenko holidaying in the Maldives is unsettling, political scientist Andrey Yermolaev writes in Strana:
“Of course like any rich man, Petro Poroshenko can afford a luxury holiday. However we're talking about the president and supreme commander of a country at war. For us the matter of his safety - as well as that of other leaders all of whom are party to state secrets - is key. His flying to another country in a private jet, in the company of others, seems very odd. Were this trip and the stay on the island organised with an eye to the demands placed on the president? Who accompanied him? Was he on holiday during this time, and if so, who exercised the operative control over the situation in the country?”
Journalists overshot the mark
The investigative report does not even deserve to be called journalism, pro-Poroshenko political scientist Viktor Ukolov writes in Ukrayinska Pravda:
“In my view in its last broadcast the TV show 'Skhemy' involuntarily took part in (Russia's) hybrid war and transgressed the boundaries of journalism in the process. Objective media focus on how public funds are spent and not on how politicians spend their own money. But dedicating an entire show to examining how much the Poroshenkos spent is more like through-the-keyhole journalism. With this programme 'Skhemy's anti-corruption investigation morphed into a pale copy of the society pages or some paparazzi's video blog.”