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March 2017

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Parliament.kg: Back view

03/07/15 11:23, Bishkek – 24.kg news agency, by Darya PODOLSKAYA, Makhinur NIYAZOVA

The question of the next redrawing the Constitution of Kyrgyzstan was postponed indefinitely. "Tailors" - the leaders of the three factions that make up the parliamentary majority coalition, Chynybai Tursunbekov, Omurbek Tekebayev and Felix Kulov - withdrew the controversial bill. The document provided not only editing, but also the removal of the moratorium imposed till 2020, to any attempts to change the Constitution. And this trio of deputies wanted to add a referendum in the election campaign-2015. In their scenario, the parliamentary elections and a plebiscite should be held on the same day.

Experts, civic activists and the general public strongly criticized not only the law, but also the intention to cancel the moratorium evading the law. And representatives of the Venice Commission compared the Kyrgyz Republic with Haiti in the frequency of rewriting the Constitution and have begun to warn against such steps.

Fear factor 

Some analysts believe that Tursunbekov, Tekebayev and Kulov decided to do a good turn to the seventh floor and push necessary amendments. According to the initiative of the "three," the vertical of executive power greatly enhances, Constitutional Chamber which has become an obstacle, will be abolished, transforming the board adjudicating only recommendatory decisions, faction leaders are able to drive out of the parliament those who are out of favour. In short, the triumph of questionable democracy in the minds of individual officials, close to the president.

The protests began in Bishkek. Civic activists formed a movement in defense of the Constitution. "There is usurpation, and it is - a crime. The principles laid down in the eighth edition of the Constitution, adopted in 2010, provided a free people's choice, mandate "saved" the deputies from the dictatorship of the leaders of parties and factions. And now we get even more dependent and, therefore, useless puppets-deputies. All of these proposed changes could be solved at the level of ordinary laws and codes. Just these three leaders no longer have any credibility among their own party members and thus want to establish their authority over the parliamentary faction," one of its representatives Shairbek Mamatoktorov said.

For some reason initiators didn't want to have an explanation with outraged electorate. The head of Ar-Namys was answerable for "the three." "Targeted changes to the Constitution of Kyrgyzstan are not aimed at usurpation of power," - Felix Kulov tried to convince. According to him, there is no perfect constitution. "The fundamental laws in other countries were also subjected to changes. Our goal - to make a point changes that are not aimed at usurpation of power and strengthening the powers of the president. We just want to define a clear position on the functions of the executive branch, to strengthen the responsibility of deputies," he said.

Failed to submit

Before going to the vacation, lobbyists of amendments should have pushed through Parliament the bill on withdrawal of the moratorium and the referendum on the Constitution. And then suddenly on Saturday, June 27, the president asked Tursunbekov, Tekebayev and Kulov withdraw documents. In his letter to the leaders of the coalition factions Almazbek Atambaev emphasized: the work done by MPs on the analysis of the effectiveness of individual provisions of the Basic Law is commendable. "Preliminary discussion of the changes that you suggested has showed strong support for the majority of its proposals from the expert community and the voters of Kyrgyzstan. Especially in the removal of artificial barriers to the construction of a sustainable system of interaction between branches of government, improve the credibility of the people, the rule of law and respect for the rights of ordinary citizens," the text said. At the same time, according to the head of state, individual proposals of the bill caused heated debates in society, there was also an obvious lack of time given for the preliminary discussion of the draft law.

Curtain? Intermission. The initiators, as they say, keep silence. Even the "father" of the Constitution Omurbek Tekebayev refused to comment. And the leader of SDPK faction (the ruling party) Chynybai Tursunbekov didn't want to explain what he feels - as one of the authors of the planned redrawing - after the slap of the president? Felix Kulov got used. He commented to 24.kg news agency, why he and his partners decided not to contradict the president's will. "The head of Kyrgyzstan praised our legislative initiatives. It is important for politician to find a consensus. We went to meet the request of Almazbek Atambayev and agreed to withdraw the bill. It should be noted that the process is launched, and it won't stop. In the next convocation of the deputies it will be raised again, because today all parties have their own vision on the improvement of the Constitution. It's a good thing that we have been given a respite," Felix Kulov said.

He noted that the expert opinion of the Venice Commission was also considered. "There are recommendations, which can be listened to. For example, it is proposed to prescribe that the Constitutional Court may, at the request of the parliamentary minority, raise the issue of recall of deputies. They came to this norm on the basis of our practice and realizing that there is no real opposition, and it often goes to the side of the majority. Now the Constitutional Chamber doesn't solve such issues, and therefore it should be given such powers. But it must be noted that the constitution of the countries that submitted their experts to the Venice Commission, are not perfect themselves. And so we will listen to their advice, but taking into account national specifics," Felix Kulov said.

It is not clear what kind of "national identity" in such a demonstrative disregard for the law.

No harm in trying 

Experts believe that such a sharp change of mood in the White House is caused by the recent events in Armenia. Recall, for almost two weeks, were held continuing demonstrations in protest against the increase in electricity tariffs. This is the official version. However, witnesses and reporters on the ground tell that the main cause of people on the streets have become reckless actions of the government of the country, leading to expansion of Russian capital.

According to the expert Zainidin Kurmanov, the idea to rewrite the Constitution again wasn't born in the minds of local politicians, but imported from the outside, because the proposed by the majority coalition amendment are very similar to changes made earlier in the Russian Constitution. According to them, the vertical of executive power under the prime minister strengthens, who also receives a bonus in the form of a pocket parliament. "We were offered to do the same. But when thousands of protests began in Armenia, Bishkek was given command - back, and the draft law on the adjustment of the Constitution was quickly withdrawn, because people understood - the situation can be out of control, and to raise the degree of protest potential to a critical peak. Our country has long been under external management, and all decisions on Kyrgyzstan are made not in our White House," Zainidin Kurmanov said.

The head of the Department of International Law in KRSU Bekbosun Borubashov partly agrees with him. He believes that the parliament won't leave attempts to redraw the Basic Law, and the government has repeatedly make efforts to change the constitution. "This was the first step, and further attempts will be made again. I remember that the proposal to amend the Constitution was made in March by the majority coalition and Daniyar Narymbaev. They proposed to revise the powers of party leaders, leaders of the factions, the Prime Minister, the Constitutional Chamber and other amendments. It became obvious that the current Basic Law doesn't suit them. But at the last moment, they abandoned the idea. They are afraid of unrest," the expert believes.

He notes that Tursunbekov, Kulov and Tekebayev did the right thing. "Giving up this objective for a while - correct analysis. But the authorities will continue attempts, because they are not satisfied with the Basic Law in the part of the management system. If elections are held without major incidents and current proponents keep seats in parliament in the spring of 2016 they will try to push through amendments to the Constitution for the second time. Everything depends on the election results. By the end of the term of the presidency of Almazbek Atambayev the referendum will be held," Bekbosun Borubashov said.

With an eye to Yerevan

Experts believe that MPs withdrew two other controversial bills for the fear of the wrath of the active population - the so-called anti-gay and "foreign agents." Both initiatives have caused heated discussion in society, opinion was divided. Hot debate in particular has caused the second document - recognition of NGOs by foreign agents. The day before it was removed from the agenda and postponed to September.

...Officials from the authorities realize that they are sitting on a powder keg. After all, analysts don't exclude that in Yerevan can turn Maidan, similar to Ukrainian. Many predict a repeat of the scenario in Kyrgyzstan. Is this the reason that influenced the decision of the members of the parliament to refuse controversial initiatives, trying to keep a good face on a bad game?

The electorate will remember fifth convocation, despite attempts to reassure voters in their productivity, as one that failed to generate ideas and to make their own decisions. Deputies of the fifth convocation turned out to be none other than puppets of puppeteers from the seventh floor.

URL: http://eng.24.kg/politic/176352-news24.html
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«When we ran in the elections, we said that would even get the moon and the sun from the sky ».
MP Kamchybek Joldoshbayev at a meeting of Parliament, February 2, 2017.

«What have you done besides sale of donkeys to China?».
Deputy Ryskeldi Mombekov to the head of State Inspectorate for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Safety Kalysbek Zhumakanov at a meeting of Parliament, February 1, 2017.

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