Official debates of Volodymyr Zelensky and Petro Poroshenko at the expense of the state budget should be held in the studio of the National Public TV and Radio Company of Ukraine.
A corresponding statement was made by the Chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC) Tatyana Slipachuk.
“I draw your attention to the existing CEC resolution of May 5, 2014 No. 472, which established the procedure of the debate. There only indicated the old address on the street Melnikova, which is now – Yuri Ilienko street. But the address is the same. This is the premises of a public television and radio company. Debates should be held there. These are TV debates, which must necessarily be held in accordance with the law,” said Slipachuk.
According to her, funds for holding debates at the expense of the state budget were allocated back in 2018.
“An important characteristic of these debates is that they are paid from the state budget, which is managed by the CEC. Of course, these funds were allocated back in 2018. This is part of the electoral process,” noted Slipachuk.
The electoral law says that the debate between presidential candidates should be held on the last Friday before the voting day, that is, April 19, if we talk about the presidential elections of 2019. This debate should take place on the air of the National Public Television and Radio Company of Ukraine. They can also broadcast on other channels for free.
However, the showman, comedian and presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky suggested holding a debate with Poroshenko at the stadium. Poroshenko agreed to such a debate, although he noted that the legislation of Ukraine clearly regulates the debate. Poroshenko also appointed a debate on Zelensky at the “Olympic” stadium on April 14.