Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has decided to dismiss the head of his security service (SBU), Ivan Bakanov. The announcement has been delayed for lack of a successor.

Bakanov is Zelensky’s childhood friend. He became his producer when Zelensky was an acrobat, and was appointed head of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) when Zelensky was elected president.

According to his Western counterparts, he is grossly incompetent in the performance of his duties but is committed to covering up Zelensky’s corruption and that of his cronies, which makes him particularly difficult to shake off. The Pandora Papers investigation revealed that he had played a major role in the offshore companies that helped Volodymyr Zelensky stash abroad the money he stole from his country.