Do we really need such a mayor? - The tenants of house 15/2 on Ilyushina street in Saint Petersburg in doubt
A group of tenants of this former dormitory, now turned a residential estate, staged a series of ‘’single pickets’’ on Nevsky prospect in the center of Saint Petersburg, protesting forced evictions. They were holding posters which read: ‘’ One has to wait for three years for what is promised. Do we really need such a Mayor? “
The protest action was held at the period between noon and two p.m. in the area located in the busiest area of the city.
Georgy Poltavchenko, Saint Petersburg City Mayor, has been in office for three years now. He became the ‘’acting Mayor’’ on August, 22, 2011. At present, Mr. Poltavchenko is preparing to run for the City Mayor’s office, and the City of Saint Petersburg is involved now in a regular election campaign. This campaign and the election are going to be a sheer formality given the dominant political environment in Russia.
For about three years on end, the Mayor and officials from the city Government have been promising the tenants of the Ilyushina house evicted from their house that their problem be resolved and they be provided with decent housing.
However, no real steps have been made so far on behalf of Mayor and his office to deliver on their promises. Now, the situation in the Ilyushina house has become even worse. The new owner, the Fourth Trust company, who illegally privatized the apartments in this high rise building in the ‘’roaring 1990es’’, has waged forced eviction mili9tary style operations, throwing the tenants’ belongings away into the stair well and replacing locks on the apartment doors. All this is perpetrated without court marshals and police present.
Having confronted this state of things, the tenants are blaming not only the Fourth Trust on this but also City Government – and in particular the Primorsky district administration, City Government and City Mayor and his Office, who have done nothing to prevent these evictions and protect the people who received their apartments in the house for their many yearlong work on the construction sites of Leningrad – Saint Petersburg.