Akunamatata

Мысли сказанные в некуда

Just another illusion for grateful audience.

Having experienced fifteen years of independence, plenty of reforms on democratization and rule of law, Uzbekistan has never had any single day of real parliamentarism. Oliy Majlis is like a theater where deputy-actors play their important roles in the development of the state. Platforms of political parties are almost identical. Being not known to the most of population these political parties always proclaim that they fully support all bright ideas of the President.

Just another bright idea has come into leaders mind recently. Draft laws «On the role of political parties in renovation and democratization of state management and modernization of the country» and «On amendment of some articles of the Constitution of the Republic of Uzbekistan» were submitted to the lower house of the Oliy Majlis.

Publication of the documents contemporized with the meeting of the EU-Uzbekistan Cooperation Council in Brussels. Together with the other urgent undertakings the bill is supposed to convince the EU that Uzbekistan is ready for dialog and sanctions imposed a year ago, are no longer necessary.

The bill permits establishment of factions in the national parliament, and factions themselves are permitted to be in the opposition to the authorities. Prime ministers are to be nominated by the president and endorsed by the parliament. Whenever the parliament votes the candidate down, the president is empowered to repeat the nomination twice more. The president is permitted to disband the parliament after the third rejection and appoint acting prime minister.

Outwardly offering political parties additional freedom, the president retains the right to nominate the heads of regional and municipal administrations for endorsement by regional and municipal councils of people’s deputies.

A closer look at the draft law shows in the meantime that introduction of the term «opposition» in officialese is the only innovation it suggests. There has been no opposition in Uzbekistan until now — discounting the episode in December 2004, right after the parliamentary election, when National Democratic Party proclaimed itself the opposition to the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, still laying emphasis on their loyalty the President.

«Factions of political parties and deputies nominated by initiative groups that do not accept the policy and program of the new government or their elements may proclaim themselves the opposition.»

The bill proceeds to outline the rights of the opposition that actually boil down to the ability to suggest alternative draft laws, put a «separate opinion» on protocols of plenary meetings, and participate in conciliatory commissions.

The proposed changes reportedly say the president should consult with parliamentary groups before nominating a candidate for the post of prime minister. But they would also allow the President to dismiss the parliament in case lawmakers refused to appoint his nominee after three votes. Personally, I can hardly imagine that fantastic situation, when toy deputies dare to press the “against” button.
The consultation on the prime minister’s position and the Tashkent municipal and regional hokims is not likely to change the status quo too much, but it looks nice on paper. These positions will actually continue to be appointed by the president without any consultation from anyone.

Registan.NET discussing possible reasons of introducing the bill says:

First is that Karimov can pull it off now without resistance. He and the clan he has built are far more powerful than they were a decade ago. He faces far less competition.

Second is that it looks good at a very key time. This will almost certainly pass, and Western observers will probably hail this as a concrete step towards liberalization.

Third, and this is just speculation, is that perhaps Karimov is feeling the need to prepare the ground for his successor.

UzMetronom says that this is about wooing Europe ahead of the EU’s decision on sanctions. While these moves were welcomed by the EU, analysts say they are unlikely to bring democracy any time soon to the tightly-controlled former Soviet republic.

Since amendment to the constitution could be a good reason for referendum, there is a certain possibility of including one extra question to the ballot paper, regarding limitation of Presidency to the two consecutive terms. That could be an irrefragable answer to the many of analysts, repeatedly asking – “Why?”

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Ноябрь 25, 2006 - Posted by | Akuna - English, Международные отношения, Политика, Право

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