On the evening of July 20, President Volodymyr Zelensky announced during his daily address that he was planning an imminent reshuffle of the Cabinet of Ministers. One of those in danger of losing his post was Oleksandr Tkachenko, the Minister of Culture and Information Policy.

“I suggested two steps to the head of government. The first is to find extra-budgetary funds for projects that we really need now, there are people in the world who can help. And secondly, I asked the Prime Minister to consider replacing the Minister of Culture and Information Policy,” Zelensky said.

The President's decision was prompted by public criticism of the inappropriate use of funds from the national budget during wartime. For example, Hr. 500 million had been allocated to complete the construction of the National Museum of the Holodomor Genocide of the Ukrainian People. A further Hr. 448 million had been earmarked for the production of various TV series. Tkachenko had argued that these expenditures were important and appropriate.

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But round midnight on Thursday night, the minister posted on Facebook that he had submitted his resignation. “I submitted my resignation to the Prime Minister tonight [20 July] in response to the wave of misunderstandings about the importance of culture during the war,” Tkachenko wrote.

Referring to his work, he wrote that “both private and budgetary funds spent on culture are no less important during the war than money spent on drones, because culture is a shield of our identity and our borders. And this is my principled position against others.”

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Kyiv Post contacted the Presidential Office for comment about whether the resignation had been accepted and had a future ministerial nominee been identified, but did not receive a response.

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Comments ( 1)

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Petro
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Allocating money to art and culture in wartime is a war crime. Send Tkachenko to the front line immediately.

Kelley Kunnanz
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@Petro, the culture minister spending money on culture, would be the only thing their ministry would have to spend money on. There may a disagreement as its importance, but not its legality. There may be a question as to how much funding the budget should provide to them. Which is certainly understandable in wartime.

It is not as if they were decorating fallout shelters with new artwork, instead of stocking them with necessary supplies. Those in Kyiv that spent money there on silly things are the criminals.

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