Will Ukrainian politicians join the rest of us? What will they prefer - rallies or family dinners? How are they going to celebrate Easter? ForUm journalists went personally to asked all these questions.
Yaroslav Sukhyi, MP (Party of Regions), a member of the parliamentary committee on social policy and labour:
- May 1 is a holiday called to remind people about their civil and labour rights. It is a good holiday and it should be celebrated with joy and tolerance, not with anger and aggression. This holiday also reminds people that they should consider interests of the state and the state, in turn, should consider interests of workers. Otherwise, both parties will suffer losses.
Personally, on May 1 I will go to visit the graves of my parents.
Oleh Liashko, MP (independent):
I sincerely congratulate the Ukrainian people on May holidays! These days are special for me. In the childhood, I was very fond of May 1, since I always got new clothes that day. Now May 1 is the birthday of my darling mother-in-law Iryna Oleksandrivna, who is like the second mom for me. This year we will spend the holiday at her cottage. I do not plan to rest, as I have a lot of meetings. At Easter, I with my wife and daughter will go to the temples - we plan to go to Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra Monastery, the St. Volodymyr Cathedral, the St. Basil the Great Cathedral, and the St. Andrew Church.
We are also going to plant potato in the village of Varva, Chernihiv region. Moreover, I get e-mail from voters with the request to help them with planting potato, so maybe I'll go to some of them.
Oleh Zarubynsky, MP, the Party of Regions faction:
I plan to work, not relax, in the time intervals between May 1, May 2, May 5 and May 9. At Easter, usually my wife's parents and my relatives go to church. I do not always go, but this year I consider such a possibility.
Petro Symonenko, MР, the Communist Party of Ukraine faction:
The Communist Party members, including me, spend May 1 under the slogan "Peace, labor, May – we have to fight for it." We believe that these calls are relevant now more than ever. On May 9, we organize the victory parades in the different cities of Ukraine.
Volodymyr Oliynyk, MP, Party of Regions faction:
- On May holidays I will go to visit my dears in Cherkassy. May 1 is the day of working solidarity, so it is a good time to work in the summerhouse and to fix the garden. Most probably, I will be fixing mine these days. If the weather is fine, we might organizer a festive table. In my opinion, solidarity is not going back and force as in soviet times, but staying with the family and working.
On May 9, I plan to join the parade, talk to people and honor war veterans. The parades are a good thing, as they have a noble goal. Every year I support veterans in this way or another - give them presents, hold meetings. However, I believe that nowadays veterans care more about communication than financial support. It is more important for them to know that they have not been forgotten.
Volodymyr Yavoryvski, MP, Batkivshchyna (Motherland) faction:
- I do not really celebrate May holidays. I either work or fix my garden. As for Easter, my family and I traditionally go to the all-night service. Moreover, we always fast on the eve of it. My wife is very serious about the fast, but I fast partially - no meat but some of fish.
Ivan Drach, poet, writer, founder of the People's Movement of Ukraine:
- Every year I celebrate Easter according to the tradition. If I cannot find ready Easter eggs to buy and I make them myself. Thus, everything is going to be as usual.
Ruslan Koshulinski, MP, "Freedom" Union (Svoboda), deputy speaker:
- May 1 is my first childhood memories. My parents were forces to participate in demonstrations, and as there was no one I could stay with, my parents always took me with them. May weather was not always warm...And those huge long placards...God Jesus! It was terrible. Moreover, after the rally the working class used to go to "celebrate", meaning drinking. The holidays did not cause any inner emotions, people just had to pay the soviet duty.
I hope these holidays I will finally get home, in Lviv, will see my family and children. I might even find some time to read a book.
Valery Kalchenko, MP, Batkivshchyna (Motherland):
- I will stay in Kirovograd for May holidays. There will be four days-off and my daughters will come to visit me. Together we will celebrate the holidays. Moreover, my younger daughter has birthday these days, so it will be a double feast.
Ostap Stupka, actor:
- This year my family and I will go to Western Ukraine, to my wife's parents. We will celebrate Easter there together. On Easter, we traditionally go to church, but not for the all-night service - only in the morning.
Avigdor Eskin, Israeli political scientist, publicist and public figure:
- In Israel, the May Day is celebrated only by the Communist Party of Israel, which has long been turned into an Arab nationalist party. Therefore, in our case this date is more of a negative connotation.
We await regular anti-Jewish statements by the Communists and other Arab radicals. It sounds ridiculous, but that is the case.
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