Local self-governance is a right granted to every Ukrainian by the Constitution, and Kyivans have been deprived of exercising this right for a long time. The last elected mayor resigned over a year ago, leaving Popov at the helm. The city council’s powers ran out in June.

But there is no election date in sight. Backed by the Constitutional Court, Ukraine’s authorities are sabotaging the election. Disorganized opposition does not help, either. Even in the best-case scenario the date of election can be set no earlier than autumn, because the parliament (which sets the date) reconvenes in September.

But there will be no best-case scenario. The previous attempt to set the date failed, partly because of the actions (and inaction) of the opposition. But the real problem is that the government fears an election in Kyiv.

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