Kiev, Ukraine – Comic Volodymyr Zelenskyy has gained each rounds of Ukraine’s presidential election with an enormous margin, erasing President Petro Poroshenko’s possibilities of reelection 5 years after coming to energy.
On Sunday, Zelenskyy secured greater than 73 % of ballots within the nation’s runoff vote with underneath 25 % of voters supporting the incumbent.
Simply three weeks in the past, on March 31, the political novice got here on high amongst 39 presidential hopefuls within the first spherical of voting.
Listed here are a few of the particulars on who he’s and the way he pulled it off:
The 41-year-old is a Russian-speaking comedian, actor and proprietor of a manufacturing firm, Kvartal 95.
Whereas he has a regulation diploma from the Kiev Nationwide Financial College, he has by no means practised regulation. He additionally has no political expertise.
His profitable manufacturing firm produces TV exhibits, characteristic movies and comedy sequence.
Over the past three years, he has been starring in successful political TV sitcom, the Servant of the Folks, the place he fights corruption as a teacher-turned-president.
He gave his political celebration the identical identify as his present.
The millionaire of Jewish descent is married to a Christian and has two youngsters. He refuses to debate his faith.
Zelenskyy was born within the predominantly Russian-speaking industrial metropolis of Kryvyi Rih in central Ukraine.
How he reached the highest job
Zelenskyy introduced his candidacy throughout a televised New 12 months’s Eve comedy efficiency.
After formally registering himself with Ukraine’s Central Election Fee, Zelenskyy ran an unorthodox election marketing campaign based mostly on comedy excursions and social media, largely shunning journalists and avoiding debates.
Regardless of giving no particulars about how he meant to repair the corruption-riddled and war-torn Ukraine, Zelenskyy quickly shot to the highest within the nation’s opinion polls, benefitting from the Ukrainian’s fatigue of mainstream politicians.
Oleksiy Haran, a professor of comparative politics on the College of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, informed Al Jazeera that Ukrainians didn’t seem to tell apart between his TV character and Zelenskyy.
“Folks projected the picture of the fictional president in his film into the true candidate. It is a psychological phenomenon,” he stated.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy wins Ukraine’s presidential vote: Exit polls 2:18
What does he stand for?
Zelenskyy has stated that he helps Ukraine’s aspiration to at some point be part of the European Union and NATO.
He holds Russia’s President Vladimir Putin answerable for the warfare in Ukraine’s jap areas of Donetsk and Luhansk that has killed greater than 13,000 individuals because it erupted in 2014.
Zelenskyy needs Moscow to return Ukraine’s annexed Crimean Peninsula and launch 24 Ukrainian sailors captured by the Russian naval forces within the Black Sea final yr.
He stated on Sunday that Ukraine will proceed speaking to Russia within the Normandy format, the peace talks that embody Germany, France, Ukraine and Russia.
Zelenskyy additionally stated he’ll reboot the Minsk Settlement that the quartet negotiated in 2015 to safe a ceasefire between Ukraine’s military and the Moscow-backed separatists within the east.
“Our precedence primary now’s to return all of our prisoners, all of our hostages, prisoners of warfare,” he stated in his victory speech.
Is Zelenskyy unbiased?
Many Ukrainians Al Jazeera spoke to within the lead-up to the election feared that Ihor Kolomoisky, a self-exiled oligarch with a grudge in opposition to Poroshenko has been backing Zelenskyy.
Kolomoisky owns the tv channel that airs Zelenskyy’s exhibits. In response to a research by the Reuters information company of car registration databases, firm possession paperwork and photographic information, Kolomoisky and Zelenskyy intersect in different methods as effectively.
In response to the report, the 2 males have frequent enterprise companions; Zelenskyy makes use of safety employees who previously have been additionally seen accompanying Kolomoisky; a former Kolomoisky adviser is on Zelenskyy’s marketing campaign group, and; no less than two automobiles utilized by Zelenskyy and his entourage are owned by individuals or entities linked to Kolomoisky.
Each Zelenskyy and Kolomoisky have stated their relationship is strictly skilled.
What’s subsequent for him?
After the inauguration, anticipated in early June – Zelenskyy has to appoint the nation’s prime minister and the cupboard. Inside weeks, he should bounce in election mode once more as Ukraine has a parliamentary vote scheduled for October 27.
With out securing a majority within the parliament, Zelenskyy may have no probability of creating any modifications within the nation as his reforms need to be permitted by the MPs.
“Zelenskyy has to hit the bottom working as Ukrainians are notoriously fickle of their enthusiasm for brand new leaders and develop upset shortly,” Peter Zalmayev, a Kiev-based political analyst, informed Al Jazeera.
“He should match his efficiency on this election on the October parliamentary elections, with a view to kind a big sufficient coalition to control successfully.”
Observe Tamila Varshalomidze on Twitter: @tamila87v