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The referendum in Kyrgyzstan: with the anarchy in the country time to finish?
Material posted: Pankratenko Igor N.Publication date: 17-12-2016

In Kyrgyzstan (forgive me reader, but for the Russian language this word sounds better than the official "Kyrgyzstan") December 11, held a referendum on amendments to the Constitution of the country. In 25 years of independence such a popular expression of will takes place for the seventh time, and, in my opinion, the present is the most important.

The parliamentary system installed in June 2010, immediately after the overthrow of President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, was to have spoken to her local supporters, for Kyrgyzstan is clearly wrong. First of all, because – though it may sound hard and will bring upon the author the wave of criticism - the population of the Republic and its political elite was not ready for parliamentary democracy. Which, as you know, if you compare it with a presidential form of government, in addition to the broader "rights and liberties" imposes a higher level of civic responsibility. But that is what the majority of the public and political elites of Kyrgyzstan was not ready.

But first – actually about the specifics of the past Sunday December 11 referendum. The developers of the changes said that only introduced more than 30 amendments to Chapter 24 of the Constitution and its preamble. The most significant of these relate to powers of the Prime Minister of the Republic, which submitted for discussion version substantially expanded. Now the head of the government will be able to appoint and dismiss Ministers without the approval of the President and without the involvement of local councils, block and return to Parliament a bill providing for an increase of budget expenditures. As well as, among other things, the Prime Minister and his deputies won the right to retain parliamentary seats, allowing them to return to the seat of Parliament after the resignation: "the Resignation, dismissal and termination of duties of the Prime Minister or first Deputy Prime Minister a Deputy of the Jogorku Kenesh shall entail the restoration of its parliamentary powers in full".

Complicated and the expressions of confidence in the government — now to Parliament for this it is necessary to ensure support by a simple majority, but not less than two thirds of deputies. The amendments also tighten the rules out of the factions of the parliamentary majority coalition.

There are a number of innovations affecting the rights of citizens. So, part 5 of article 36 currently reads: "Persons of marriageable age have the right to marry and to found a family". In the new edition it is stated as follows: "Family is created on the basis of voluntary Union of a man and woman reaching legal age of marriage, and the conclusion between them of marriage." Some foreign observers in this regard, Express concern that "some of the most conservative elements in the country can count this explanation as legitimation for their campaign against the so-called "non-traditional" relations."

But this, in General they are a rather exotic problem – something to fear, as more important are other constitutional amendments. In particular, stricter laws on Statute of limitations for crimes, and genocide and ecocide generally declared such a period without.

Part 2 of article 50 guarantees the citizens of the country they may not be deprived of citizenship. However, changes in the Constitution will allow the government to ignore this situation in some cases, such as the participation of citizens in the activities of Islamist groups in the middle East, Afghanistan or Pakistan.

The changes introduced in the appointment of judges at various levels up to the Supreme court. Judges in Kyrgyzstan from now on will not be totally out of control. Appears to the Supervisory body called the Constitutional chamber, which will be the most contentious issues to decide the fate of the judiciary. In addition, the judge should voluntarily give permission to control all your communications and correspondence: "the Person applying for the position of judge shall waive the right to privacy of correspondence, telephone and other conversations, postal, Telegraph and other messages for the period of tenure of a judge. In case of failure of such refusal, the person may not be appointed or elected judge." The President can change judges regional and city courts, and judges a bad reputation cannot be taken into the public service.

And another of the most significant. If before the Constitution of Kyrgyzstan to the norms of international agreements on human rights had a direct effect and priority over local law, now, order, and conditions of use will be determined by the laws of the country.

The list of novels that have been voted, according to official figures, 79,59% of the citizens participating in the voting can continue, but excessive detail would only distract from the two main aspects. Which are that, firstly, under the new Constitution, according to which the Republic begin to live from 1 December 2017, the protagonist in the political arena of Kyrgyzstan becomes the Prime Minister, and the basis of the system of checks and balances – its dependence on coalition majority in Parliament. As in his usual figurative manner, said President Almazbek Atambayev: "the Constitution we pledged "protection against the fool" to whoever came to power and became President, I could not turn the country back."

Secondly, but not least, the amendments make the system of power in the country more sustainable, and the system of checks and balances more effective. That is, in principle, create conditions to solve the main problems of the country – excessive autonomy of local elites, their constant desire to belittle the status of official Bishkek – with a concentration of all power to the "first among equals" in the kaleidoscope of regional elites, clans, parties and movements.

Which, I note, famously learned in 25 years of independence, to organize a mass "popular uprisings" in support of their ambitions: the desire to redistribute the financial flows, to outright blackmail of the authorities and to extort a business, local or foreign investors.

Parliamentary democracy, cultivated by the opponents of the current President and his predecessors, clearly premature for Kyrgyzstan. On its formation it took Europe almost three hundred years of evolutionary development. And the attempt to force this long turned to the Republic that parliamentary democracy seems to be as it is, but so specific that jeopardizes economic development and territorial integrity of the country.

To remedy this negative trend in the political architecture of Kyrgyzstan and serve as amended. On the one hand, their adoption in the referendum - a reason for optimism. Moreover – in anticipation of the new phase of the struggle of the world's major players for influence in Central Asia. But on the other hand, don't let the idea that between the impeccable architectural project and its implementation in reality are fingered clubhand superintendents and builders.

Igor Pankratenko


Tags: Central Asia

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