Prime Minister Shmyhal filed a lawsuit Wednesday

with the Kyiv District Administrative Court to cancel the order issued to him Monday by the National Agency for the Prevention of Corruption to cancel the appoint of Yuriy Vitrenko as Naftogaz CEO. Shmyhal has said the issued should be resolved by the end of next week. The Court says it is reviewing the request.

Legal warfare broke out yesterday over Yuriy Vitrenko, the new head of Naftogaz, Ukraine’s largest oil and gas company and the nation’s largest taxpayer.

 The National Agency on Corruption Prevention said the Cabinet violated conflict of interest laws by moving Vitrenko on April 28 from his post as acting Energy Minister to CEO of the state energy company. Last night, Clare Spottiswoode, Chair of the Naftogaz Supervisory Board, called on Vitrenko to step down for 10 days until the legal wrangle is resolved.

The company had a very difficult conversation with the Ministry of Finance, “which accused us that we are hiding some money and are not showing something,” according to Kobolev. “As a leader who thinks about winter and other big challenges, such as hindering the completion of the construction of Nord Stream 2,

I understood the need to plan our activities in order to ensure that Naftogaz is financially balanced. What is security for next winter? It’s enough money. Out of $2 billion, we are UAH 32 billion, that is, more than $ 1 billion were ready to transfer the budget in one way or another … Therefore, when they say“ Kobolev, you have too much money”, then, firstly, it is not with me, but in the state-owned company Naftogaz. Secondly, this money

The legal maneuver used to fire the CEO of Naftogaz raises doubts about Ukraine’s commitment to shield state companies from interference by politicians.

That was the fear expressed yesterday by a host of Ukraine-watchers: the State Department spokesman i Washington, the G7 Ambassadors in Kyiv, the speaker of the Rada, and the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine. To fire Andriy Kobolyev one year into his 4-year term, the Cabinet of Ministers resorted to suspending the Naftogaz Supervisory Board for two days, and then switching Kobolyev for his former deputy, Yuriy Vitrenko.

Critics target what they see as Ukraine’s faltering commitment to running state companies on corporate lines

.“Dismissal of Naftogaz CEO raises doubts over Ukraine’s corporate governance reforms,” headlines an Atlantic Council blog by Aura Sabadus, a regional expert on the energy industry.