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Ukrainian MP declares three national lottery wins

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Ukrainian MP declares three national lottery wins

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KIEV (Reuters) – A Ukrainian opposition leader has declared winning the national lottery three times in his income statement, earning a combined 571,045 hryvnias (16,115 pounds). Since last year, Ukrainian lawmakers and public sector workers have had to declare their incomes in an online database, a rule aimed at tackling entrenched corruption. The declarations a year ago shocked Ukrainians, with some officials declaring ownership of hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, fleets of luxury cars and large tracts of land. Oleh Lyashko, the head of the populist Radical Party and who has styled himself as a representative of the common man, last year declared that he owned property in Kiev’s most exclusive district and his household had cash worth more than $1 million. The average monthly salary in Ukraine is $267. Lyashko updated the declaration on Tuesday to report his lottery wins, prompting some wry comments online and a call by a former MP for an investigation. Lyashko’s office had no immediate comment. Nor did the national anti-corruption agency NAZK, responsible for checking the online declarations. “(To win) three times in a row is the stuff of fantasy,” Evgen Zhovtyak, former deputy of parliament, said on 112 TV. “I think here there is every reason for law enforcement bodies to interest themselves in whether this lottery is a fraudulent organisation with which only politicians of Lyashko’s rank can win.” The Ukrainian national lottery said in a statement: “Information on lottery winners and on the personal data of specific players is confidential information in accordance with the current legislation and cannot be disclosed without the agreement of the players.” ($1 = 26.7650 hryvnias)

(Reporting by Natalia Zinets; writing by Matthias Williams; editing by Andrew Roche)
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