Ukraine Defense minister promises audits after corruption scandal

Ukraine: Defense minister promises “audits” after corruption scandal

Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksiï Reznikov on Sunday promised internal “audits” at his ministry, following a corruption scandal related to supplies to the army amid the Russian invasion.

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Mr Reznikov admitted during a press conference that his ministry’s anti-corruption services had “failed at their job” and that they needed to be “completely restructured”.

According to him, an “internal review of all government contracts” has been launched, and there will also be “a review of international technical assistance” at a time when Kyiv is receiving more and more Western arms.

However, Mr Reznikov remained evasive about the possibility of his own resignation, while several Ukrainian media outlets have raised the possibility. He claimed that the decision rested with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Ukraine was rocked in late January amid a corruption scandal exposed by the press by a spate of layoffs and layoffs over a deal signed by the Defense Ministry for an allegedly overstated sum involving food products needed for the soldiers.

Several senior officials from that ministry were removed from their posts, while Mr Reznikov initially denounced “baseless” allegations.

It was the first major case of corruption since the Russian offensive began in a country used to such deals before the war.

The Ukrainian authorities then launched a wave of searches against administrations, officials and public figures to show their desire to make the fight against corruption a priority in the war effort and Western aid.