Olexander Shlapak, President Viktor Yushchenko’s first deputy chief, has urged the Cabinet of Ministers to apply systematic approaches to social policies and make the people’s welfare a criterion of its effectiveness, the President’s press office informs.

“The Cabinet has failed to approve its action plan in parliament. The absence of such a plan has resulted in a somewhat sporadic nature of its activities and responses to economic changes and presidential criticism instead of carrying out consistent social policies,” he said.

Shlapak said such an approach had resulted in social failures, with salary debts growing and the people’s incomes and pensions falling.“Such results have been caused by concrete decisions by the Cabinet of Ministers, particularly during the drafting of this year’s budget,” he said.

“The Government loudly and constantly reports GDP growth, forgetting, however, that the citizens do not put GDP in their pockets, for the standard of living of each citizen depends on his/her salary, pension, stipend, price and tariff policies, etc.”

Shlapak said the Cabinet had defied Yushchenko’s demands to raise salaries and pensions but was speaking about the need to do it today, on the eve of this year’s election campaign.

“Serious policies are again being replaced with loud promises. The Cabinet has failed or has been reluctant to foresee economic growth and possibilities to improve social standards. Today’s loud statements are, unfortunately, nothing but electoral vows. Society must constantly and firmly control the Government to make sure its promises do not remainon paper.”


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