Sunday, April 21, 2019

Zelenskiy wins second round of Ukraine's presidential election – exit poll

April 21, 2019 (The Guardian) Petro Poroshenko has conceded defeat in Ukraine’s presidential election as exit polls suggested an overwhelming victory for Volodymyr Zelenskiy, an actor and comedian who has no political experience other than playing the role of president in a TV series. “I’m leaving office, but I want to make it clear that I’m not leaving politics,” said Poroshenko, after acknowledging his failure to win a second term on Sunday.

Petro Poroshenko concedes defeat in Ukraine’s presidential election as his wife, Maryna, looks on. Photograph: Efrem Lukatsky/AP

Zelenskiy appeared in front of a crowd of journalists at his campaign headquarters as the polls closed, and flashed an impish grin as he pushed his way on to the stage, while the theme tune to his television show played.v “We did it together,” he said, thanking his wife, parents and campaign team. “Thanks to all the Ukrainian citizens who voted for me, and to all who didn’t. I promise I won’t mess up.”

Volodymyr Zelenskiy greets supporters at his headquarters in Kyiv after the second round of Ukraine’s presidential election. Photograph: Sergei Grits/AP

The poll suggested the 41-year-old Zelenskiy had won the presidential runoff with 73.2% of the vote against Poroshenko’s 25.3%. Official results were due to come in gradually throughout Sunday night, but the exit poll showed a humiliating defeat for Poroshenko, and was in line with a series of polls over past weeks that have suggested Zelenskiy would win the runoff with ease.