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Top Ukrainian officials quit in anti-corruption drive

Several senior Ukrainian officials have resigned as President Volodymyr Zelensky begins a shake-up of personnel across his government.

A top adviser, four deputy minis­ters and five regional governors left their posts on Tuesday.

Their departures come as Ukraine launches a broad anti-corruption drive.

Recently, authorities have seen bribery claims, reports of officials buying food at inflated prices and one figure accused of living a lavish lifestyle.

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Senior aide, Mykhailo Podolyak, said Mr Zelensky was responding to a “key public demand” that justice should apply to everyone.

The president has already banned state officials from leaving the country unless on authorised business.

The first to resign on Tuesday was Kyrylo Tymoshenko, the pres­ident’s deputy head of office, who oversaw regional policy and had earlier worked on Mr Zelensky’s election campaign.

After Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine last February, he became a frequent spokesperson for the government.

He was accused by Ukrainian investigative journalists of us­ing several expensive sports cars throughout the war – though denies any wrongdoing.

In a Telegram post, he thanked Mr Zelensky for “the opportunity to do good deeds every day and every minute”.

Deputy Defence Minister, Vyacheslav Shapovalov, also resigned, following reports he oversaw the purchase of military food supplies at inflated prices from a relatively unknown firm.

The defence minister himself – Oleksii Reznikov – has been under scrutiny for the same reason.

Ukraine has a history of cor­ruption and in 2021, Transparency International ranked the country at 122 out of 180 countries in its rank­ing of corrupt states. —BBC

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