Ukraine sacks two senior ministers at heart of wartime economy

Ukraine’s parliament voted on Thursday to sack the deputy prime minister for infrastructure and the farm minister, eradicating two senior officials who have held important portfolios for the wartime economy.

A majority of 272 lawmakers voted to dismiss Deputy Prime Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov, who oversaw the reconstruction programme and championed attempts  to set up a Black Sea shipping lane whilst a de-facto Russian blockade.

The exit of the 41-year-old comes amid plans to break up his power packed ministry into two separate portfolios, lawmakers revealed.

Kubrakov revealed on Facebook that his dismissal had not been conversed with him in advance of the vote and that he had not been given an opportunity to defend his tenure in a presentation to parliament.

Parliament also approved the resignation of Agriculture Minister Mykola Solsky who is being researched for alleged involvement in an illegal acquisition of state-owned land. The 44-year-old denies the allegations.

It was not at the same time clear who would replace the two ministers. Yaroslav Zhelezniak, a senior lawmaker, said Kubrakov will not be reappointed.

Ukrainian government officials have many times said they plan to transform the government’s structure and bring down the number of ministries as the nation deals with a huge budget deficit with most state revenues allocated towards defence attempts.