Statement by deputy Alexey Zhigulin on legally stalemate situation with announcing Dmitry Trapeznikov Acting DPR Head

The tragic death of Alexander Vladimirovich Zakharchenko led to the fact that the situation in the Donetsk People’s Republic that has occurred as of today is legally stalemate.

The norms of the Constitution establish that the powers of the Head are terminated early in the event of their death. The decision on the early termination of the powers of the Head is made by the People’s Council, in which case the Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers temporarily executes the powers of the Head.

It should be noted that on April 11, 2016, by A.V. Zakharchenko’s Decrees Nos. 97, 98 and 99, A. Yu. Timofeyev (Minister of Inland Revenue), E.S. Matyushchenko (Minister of Finance) and D.V. Trapeznikov (first head of the Administration of the Head) were respectively appointed Acting Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers. The fact that in the context of the requirements of Article 62 of the Constitution of the Donetsk People’s Republic none of the above high-ranking officials has the legal right to fulfil the duties of the Head of the Republic is obvious.

The current decision to declare (but not to appoint!) the Acting Head of the Republic does not stand up to any criticism from the legal position. It should be noted that, according to the DPR Constitution, “no other cases and decisions of other bodies than those specified in this Constitution are grounds for the Head of the Donetsk People’s Republic to be dismissed from office and early termination of their powers” (part 4 of Article 61 of the Constitution). At the same time, it is necessary to acknowledge that this is a compulsory temporary measure, caused by the need to keep the social sphere of the Republic’s life.

Our Republic must adhere to the legal path of development, we need to take care of and protect the law, this is the right way to recognition, therefore, deputies are obliged to protect any mechanisms of democracy, including the right to elect and be elected. The only true and legitimate way out of this situation is the holding of a nationwide election of the Head of the Donetsk People’s Republic in the near future.

I note that, following the consultations, the deputies from the Free Donbass and Donetsk Republic factions say that we should raise this issue at the next meeting of the People’s Council. The opinion that I expressed is supported by the deputies of both factions.

It is also worth recalling that the term of the cadence of the People’s Council of the First Convocation expires in autumn.

Alexey Zhigulin, chairman of the Committee on Criminal and Administrative Legislation (Free Donbass faction)

You might also like