Semenyuk has never been a drag. Semenyuk, first and foremost, showed Ukraine how to take inventory. She did what they did in…what nobody has done in all the 15 years. I must say that even today, given January’s privatization quota of 90 million hryvnias, the State Property Fun has already made 140 million hryvnias.— Valentyna Semenyuk, head of the State Property Fund
She’s still going strong, running the government agency that oversees privatization. Having countermanded PM Tymoshenko’s decision to sack her, President Yushchenko gave her the breath of life. What gives?
Semenyuk is a card-carrying member of the Socialist Party (SPU). Headed by Oleksandr Moroz, the SPU acted as the founding father of the Anticrisis Coalition and as the loser in the September 2007 parliamentary elections.
Before Yushchenko discovered a soft spot for her, Semenyuk had drawn flak for her role in the sale of Luhanskteplovoz, a deal that, according to him, lacked transparency. Experts believe the deal involved favoritism and undervaluation.
Why the sudden change? Yushchenko’s white knight behavior may indicate a plan to co-opt Semenyuk as a loyal ally in his privatization tug-of-war with Tymoshenko.
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