Women in Russian Politics: Matviyenko and Sliska Feel Solidarity

Valentina Matviyenko is the most probable candidate to post of St.Petersburg governor who is engoying support of the Kremlin
First Vice-speaker of the Russian Duma Lyubov Sliska says that if presidential envoy in Russia's north-west district Valentina Matviyenko makes a decision to run for the post of St.Petersburg governor, she will welcome the decision. Lyubov Sliska characterizes Valentina Matviyenko as a strong, resolute and purposeful woman. She said in an interview with RIA Novosti that she will approve of Matviyenko's decision to run for the gubernatorial post.

Pre-term elections of St.Petersburg governor are to be held because former governor Vladimir Yakovlev was appointed vice-premier of the Russian Government. Valentina Matviyenko is now considered to be the most probable candidate to the gubernatorial post who is supported by the Kremlin.

According to Lyubov Sliska, Matviyenko revealed her abilities being on the post of vice-premier overseeing social problems and during organization of festivities dedicated to the 300th anniversary of St.Petersburg. "I know it was a hard mission to persuade the deputies and members of the government to provide normal budgetary financing to the social sector."

In addition, Lyubov Sliska highly estimated team-work with Valentina Matviyenko (when she held the vice-premier post) on a draft of the RF Labor Code in 2000-2001. Lyubov Sliska was at head of the workgroup working on the document. She says that the work on the Code was carried out against the background of meetings and protest actions organized by trade unions and the left opposition who were dissatisfied with that-time labor conditions. It was Valentina Matviyenko who first suggested working on a new version of the Labor Code. The deputies continued cooperating with the vice-premier in development of social legislation, laws on pension reform in particular.      

Lyubov Sliska says: "Matviyenko is a politician who is ready to compromise, but this should be a reasonable compromise though. She always sticks to the legislation and designs only such plans that may get sure financing. It is a distinguishing feature of Matviyenko that she never indulges in political populism. As for our personal relations, we never raised voices and never got offended at each other, although mass media sometimes reported that we were on unfriendly terms. Being the first vice-speaker of the Duma, I knew that I could rely upon support of Vice-premier Valentina Matviyenko; it is important that we have managed to reach mutual understanding."

Photo: Valentina Matviyenko
RIA Novosti

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Author`s name Michael Simpson