Ukraine: Darth Vader presidential bid rejected

Vader staged a protest with Wookie and some Imperial Guards against the Electoral Commission's ruling in Kiev

Kashmira Gander
Saturday 05 April 2014 14:17
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A Darth Vader impersonator is accompanied by followers dressed as a Wookie (right), Imperial Guards (in red) and as Sith Lord 'Darth Maul' (centre).
A Darth Vader impersonator is accompanied by followers dressed as a Wookie (right), Imperial Guards (in red) and as Sith Lord 'Darth Maul' (centre).

It appears the force was not with a potential Ukrainian presidential candidate posing as Darth Vader, after authorities reportedly rejected his bid.

The man posing as the Star Wars villain was accompanied by a Wookie and a group of Imperial Guards at a protest against the decision outside the Electoral Commission in Kiev, after authorities said Vader's identity could not be verified, the BBC reported on Friday.

It is believed the unsuccessful candidate changed his name to Darth Vader in March, and was nominated by the Ukrainian Internet Party (UIP) to stand in the 25 May election.

Dmitry Golubov, leader of the party registered in 2010, said in a statement on the party’s website at the time of the nomination: "After winning intra-party primaries by a landslide, comrade Vader will be our party’s candidate."

Vader told the party’s congress that he intended to run to become president of the country recently blighted by turbulence, so he could turn it into a "galatic empire".

"I alone can make an empire out of a republic, to restore former glory, to return lost territories and pride for this country," Vader said in a party statement.

But Ukraine’s Central Electoral Commission said part of Darth Vader’s application was “questionable” and that some of his paperwork was allegedly forged, according to the BBC.

It is thought that before he changed his name, Vader was an electrician called Viktor Shechenko. One commission member suggested that Mr Shechenko is allied to Russia, and is attempting to discredit the upcoming election.

“It may seem like an innocent joke, but someone paid 2.5m hryvnyas ($227,000) for this joke,” Ihor Zhydenko told the BBC, referring to the deposit that must be given along with the application. Vader has not responded to the allegation.

Mr Zhydenko added that Darth Vader might run for the presidency in Russia, where he has received extensive media coverage. “They already have little green men,” he says, referring to Russian troops in the Crimea region. “Such a commander-in-chief would be appropriate.”

Twenty-three candidates have so far been registered to run in the upcoming presidential elections in Ukraine, that were called after President Viktor Yanukovych was ousted following months of protests.

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