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Date: 24 January 2023 Author: Grzegorz Kuczyński
Ukrainian Government Official Arrested on Suspicion of Bribery
The Cabinet of Ministers on January 22 dismissed Deputy Minister of Infrastructure and Communities Development Vasyl Lozynskiy, who has been detained and accused of receiving a bribe. He was arrested on allegations of corruption in a bid to purchase generators that are now in high demand in Ukraine.
Lozynskiy was arrested on January 21 by the Ukrainian National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU) on suspicion of embezzlement. The Cabinet of Ministers said in a statement that the decision to dismiss the official was adopted at Prime Minister Shmyhal’s initiative during an extraordinary meeting on January 22. The NABU said that Lozynskiy had received $400,000 to facilitate the conclusion of contracts for the purchase of equipment and generators at inflated prices. Lozynskiy and accomplices allegedly schemed to pocket part of the $46 million that the state allocated for the purchase of generators and other equipment back in the summer. According to the bureau, they agreed to give the contract to a bidder with inflated prices in return for a kickback. Generators are in high demand in Ukraine amid electricity shortages following Russian strikes on energy infrastructure. If found guilty, Lozynskiy faces up to 12 years in prison. Lozynskiy had held the post of deputy minister for the development of communities, territories, and infrastructure since May 2020. In November 2022, he briefly served as acting minister after his boss was appointed CEO of Naftogaz. Oleksiy Chernyshov, who has been at the helm of the Ministry of Regional Development since 2020, was believed to be inside an inner circle of the Head of the Office of President Andriy Yermak. In early January, a senior official in the Ministry for the Development of Communities, Territories, and Infrastructure joined a board of Naftogaz. Vasil Volodin served as deputy minister from June to November 2022. While Chernyshov and Volodin had worked in the Kyiv Oblast State Administration, Lozinskiy comes from the Lviv region, where he made his career before getting a job in a Ukrainian ministry.
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