Ukraine’s other war – on corruption

Full video transcript

Ukraine’s other war

- on corruption

These are pictures

of people helping a thief to steal.

What’s remarkable is that the thief

was the president of the country.

Former President Yanukovych

fled to Russia in February 2014.

He claimed to be in fear of his life,

but despite this,

he and his cronies ensured they took

as much as they could with them,

filling trucks, cars,

boats and helicopters

with money and possessions.

These things they took with them.

And these things

they had to leave behind.

President Yanukovych

liked American cars.

President Yanukovych

liked European cars.

And President Yanukovych

liked Soviet cars.

Yanukovych is

a convicted thug and thief.

He was first convicted

and jailed for robbery and assault

as young as seventeen.

By the time he fled Ukraine

over forty years later,

he had been accused of falsifying

election results, embezzlement,

nepotism and even killing protesters.

He now features on Interpol’s wanted

list for some of these charges.

If you see the wealth of Yanukovych,

this wealth was created

by the corruption system.

Ukraine is not a rich country.

It has raw materials and a strong

agricultural and industrial base,

but the average salary is around

three hundred euros a month.

Mismanagement

and corruption mean

that fifteen million Ukrainians

live beneath the poverty line.

And Yanukovych’s corruption only

added to the country’s problems.

Ukraine’s new government found

over twenty billion dollars

of gold reserves had been embezzled

during his three year presidency.

Thirty-seven billion dollars

of loans had disappeared

and seventy billion dollars had

been moved to offshore accounts.

The total cost to Ukraine

of Yanukovych’s corruption

was estimated

at a hundred billion dollars.

His main interest had

always been self-enrichment,

for himself, his family

and allies from his region of Donetsk.

A beacon of corruption is

his house on an estate outside Kiev.

For a man

who came from a poor background

and spent most of his career

in public sector jobs,

the wealth on view in the house

is difficult to explain.

If anyone was to want

to build a theme park

dedicated to corruption and

frankly bad taste, this would be it.

There’s a helipad, there’s a yacht,

there’s a private lake,

there’s a private golf course,

and there’s even a pure gold toilet.

As he and his cronies

ran from justice,

they tried to destroy

thousands of documents,

which detailed

their theft and corruption.

In these waters Yanukovych’s

cronies and security men

threw thousands of documents

as they fled to Russia with him

and his cash to escape from justice.

The documents would sink to

the bottom and never be seen again.

However, volunteer divers went

into the freezing February water

and fished them out.

Today, the contents of over two

hundred folders are being published

online on YanukovychLeaks,

detailing the extent of the corruption

of the man and his regime.

Documents recovered showed

extravagant or inflated bills,

including one for light fixtures

of forty-two million dollars.

Ukraine’s problem, now it is rid

of Yanukovych, is to rid itself

of the corrupt practices

that flourished under his regime.

After the war,

corruption is the major problem.

We... I think that...

Actually, we have

about sixty percent of the economy

which is produced

in the black side of economy.

The Euromaidan protesters not only

wanted better links with Europe,

they also wanted

an end to the corruption

that permeates many parts

of Ukrainian society.

And although Yanukovych is gone,

it’s clear that some

of the corrupt techniques,

mentality and people remain.

We have to change

the whole system of...

...police in Ukraine,

the whole system of judges.

If you go to the court,

people say

if you don’t have resources,

you cannot go to the court.

That should be changed.

Many in the business community

would welcome tackling corruption.

It will be very easy when everybody

from us, from business,

will not give black money anybody.

It’s first step, which we can

make immediately today.

I’m optimistic and I’m sure,

not tomorrow, but day per day,

we will kick out corruption

from our country.

On the twenty-first

of November 2013,

ex-President Yanukovych refused

to sign the EU association deal,

which would have meant

a new European path for Ukraine.

That refusal led to the events,

some of which was taking place

down here in Maidan.

Since that time

the country has changed enormously.

It has suffered over four thousand

deaths of civilians and soldiers

and nearly half a million Ukrainians

are refugees in their own country.

People have come back

here twelve months later

to make sure that that isn’t forgotten,

that it’s not in vain

and that those sacrifices

lead to a new Ukraine.

The government wants to tackle the

corruption of the Yanukovych years,

but Ukrainians are already

waiting to see the changes

and they won’t wait forever.

How long do you think

Ukrainians will wait?

Up to two years,

not more, up to two years.

And then?

And then everything

can be unexpected.

I think that a new unstable period

or even a new revolution

will come very soon

if we do not compete

with corruption.

Ukraine’s other war

- on corruption

These are pictures

of people helping a thief to steal.

What’s remarkable is that the thief

was the president of the country.

Former President Yanukovych

fled to Russia in February 2014.

He claimed to be in fear of his life,

but despite this,

he and his cronies ensured they took

as much as they could with them,

filling trucks, cars,

boats and helicopters

with money and possessions.

These things they took with them.

And these things

they had to leave behind.

President Yanukovych

liked American cars.

President Yanukovych

liked European cars.

And President Yanukovych

liked Soviet cars.

Yanukovych is

a convicted thug and thief.

He was first convicted

and jailed for robbery and assault

as young as seventeen.

By the time he fled Ukraine

over forty years later,

he had been accused of falsifying

election results, embezzlement,

nepotism and even killing protesters.

He now features on Interpol’s wanted

list for some of these charges.

If you see the wealth of Yanukovych,

this wealth was created

by the corruption system.

Ukraine is not a rich country.

It has raw materials and a strong

agricultural and industrial base,

but the average salary is around

three hundred euros a month.

Mismanagement

and corruption mean

that fifteen million Ukrainians

live beneath the poverty line.

And Yanukovych’s corruption only

added to the country’s problems.

Ukraine’s new government found

over twenty billion dollars

of gold reserves had been embezzled

during his three year presidency.

Thirty-seven billion dollars

of loans had disappeared

and seventy billion dollars had

been moved to offshore accounts.

The total cost to Ukraine

of Yanukovych’s corruption

was estimated

at a hundred billion dollars.

His main interest had

always been self-enrichment,

for himself, his family

and allies from his region of Donetsk.

A beacon of corruption is

his house on an estate outside Kiev.

For a man

who came from a poor background

and spent most of his career

in public sector jobs,

the wealth on view in the house

is difficult to explain.

If anyone was to want

to build a theme park

dedicated to corruption and

frankly bad taste, this would be it.

There’s a helipad, there’s a yacht,

there’s a private lake,

there’s a private golf course,

and there’s even a pure gold toilet.

As he and his cronies

ran from justice,

they tried to destroy

thousands of documents,

which detailed

their theft and corruption.

In these waters Yanukovych’s

cronies and security men

threw thousands of documents

as they fled to Russia with him

and his cash to escape from justice.

The documents would sink to

the bottom and never be seen again.

However, volunteer divers went

into the freezing February water

and fished them out.

Today, the contents of over two

hundred folders are being published

online on YanukovychLeaks,

detailing the extent of the corruption

of the man and his regime.

Documents recovered showed

extravagant or inflated bills,

including one for light fixtures

of forty-two million dollars.

Ukraine’s problem, now it is rid

of Yanukovych, is to rid itself

of the corrupt practices

that flourished under his regime.

After the war,

corruption is the major problem.

We... I think that...

Actually, we have

about sixty percent of the economy

which is produced

in the black side of economy.

The Euromaidan protesters not only

wanted better links with Europe,

they also wanted

an end to the corruption

that permeates many parts

of Ukrainian society.

And although Yanukovych is gone,

it’s clear that some

of the corrupt techniques,

mentality and people remain.

We have to change

the whole system of...

...police in Ukraine,

the whole system of judges.

If you go to the court,

people say

if you don’t have resources,

you cannot go to the court.

That should be changed.

Many in the business community

would welcome tackling corruption.

It will be very easy when everybody

from us, from business,

will not give black money anybody.

It’s first step, which we can

make immediately today.

I’m optimistic and I’m sure,

not tomorrow, but day per day,

we will kick out corruption

from our country.

On the twenty-first

of November 2013,

ex-President Yanukovych refused

to sign the EU association deal,

which would have meant

a new European path for Ukraine.

That refusal led to the events,

some of which was taking place

down here in Maidan.

Since that time

the country has changed enormously.

It has suffered over four thousand

deaths of civilians and soldiers

and nearly half a million Ukrainians

are refugees in their own country.

People have come back

here twelve months later

to make sure that that isn’t forgotten,

that it’s not in vain

and that those sacrifices

lead to a new Ukraine.

The government wants to tackle the

corruption of the Yanukovych years,

but Ukrainians are already

waiting to see the changes

and they won’t wait forever.

How long do you think

Ukrainians will wait?

Up to two years,

not more, up to two years.

And then?

And then everything

can be unexpected.

I think that a new unstable period

or even a new revolution

will come very soon

if we do not compete

with corruption.

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