The Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers decided to dismiss Volodymyr Zhmak from the post of board chairperson of the Ukrainian Railways joint-stock company (Ukrzaliznytsia) at a meeting on Wednesday, 17 March.

Member of Parliament Oleksii Honcharenko announced this in his Telegram channel.

"The Cabinet of Ministers has approved early termination of JSC Ukrzaliznytsia’s Board Chairman Volodymyr Zhmak," Honcharenko wrote.

Honcharenko added that the Cabinet of Ministers appointed Ivan Yuryk as the acting board chairperson of the company.

As the CFTS portal reported earlier, Ukrzaliznytsia’s management recently held a press conference in response to statements by representatives of an interim parliamentary commission that was set up to investigate a drop in the company's performance. Zhmak and the company’s then-director of commercial operations and logistics Irakli Ezugbaia commented on the company’s performance after the replacement of the company's previous management. According to them, the performance indicators of the company’s fleet of freight cars have improved, the shortage of locomotive traction has been eliminated, and revenues from freight transportation have increased. 

Zhmak was due to appear before the interim parliamentary investigative commission that was set up to assess the state of Ukrzaliznytsia on 18 March. However, Ukrzaliznytsia requested that he be allowed to appear via a video link because of illness.

A day earlier, the Interfax Ukraine news agency reported that one of the reasons for Zhmak’s possible dismissal could be that the company’s supervisory board "does not like Zhmak's steps to restructure the company." As reported in early February, Ukrzaliznytsia’s supervisory board demanded at the time that the company’s board of directors take no action to change the structure of the company.

Ukrzaliznytsia’s former director of business development Andrii Riazantsev wrote on his Facebook page on 16 March, "The supervisory board unanimously supported the dismissal of Volodymyr Zhmak from the post of Ukrzaliznytsia board chairman."

The Cabinet of Ministers appointed Zhmak as Ukrzaliznytsia’s board chairperson on 26 August last year.