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Early parliamentary elections to be held in Kazakhstan

Members of Mazhilis (the lower chamber of the Kazakh parliament) have addressed President Nursultan Nazarbayev asking him to dissolve the parliament. MP Nurlan Abdirov read out a joint statement of the parliamentarians.

MP Vladislav Kosarev believes that “the current Mazhilis has fulfilled its historic mission by establishing a legal basis for implementing the National Plan.”

He mentioned the parliament passed about 80 bills on every of the five institutional reforms. “And now that a new period in history is coming, large-scale modernization of the country is beginning, and presidential reforms are implemented politically, it is highly important that the parties get a new mandate from the electorate,” Kosarev says.

Leader of the Ak Zhol party Azat Peruashev says the early parliamentary elections are a necessary measure. Peruashev proposes asking the people “in what parties they trust in such an uneasy situation, what parties should continue working in the parliament.”

Kazakh political analyst Sultanbek Sultangaliyev believes that three parties are to get to the new parliament: Nur Otan, the Communist People’s Party of Kazakhstan, and Ak Zhol.

Daniyar Ashimbayev, editor of the biographical almanac “Who is Who in Kazakhstan” says that only three parties are ready for the elections. “Preparations for the elections have started long ago. The task is clear: the economic situation is deteriorating, oil prices are slumping followed be devaluation of the currency, price hike, worsening living standards and growing social tension. Truly, it is easier to have the elections now. In case they are conducted as scheduled, this fall, the economic situation will be unpredictable. So, it is unclear how all the coming development will influence the social life,” Ashimbayev notes.

“I do not think things will change in comparison with the previous elections. Most probably, we shall have the same parties in the parliament. On the other hand, personalities may rotate in the leadership of the parties, who will be in the party lists, who will run for the chair of the parliamentary speaker, his deputy or leaders of factions. These matters are to be settled after the elections,” the expert says.

Head of the Risk Assessment Group Dosym Satpayev wrote in his Facebook account: unfortunately, the parliamentary elections in Kazakhstan for a long time already remind a show that is interesting only for its director, but not the audience. “Actually, it can be stage in an empty hall. To cut it short, the notary office at the presidential administration and the government has dissolved itself. We are to expect a new notary office,” Satpayev posted.

The expert has told EADaily that “it would be naïve to expect a new, more ambitious and independent parliament.” The political parties started preparing for the parliamentary elections last year. For instance, the Auyl Party merged with the Kazakhstan Patriots Party. Besides, the authorities continued clearing off the opposition by liquidating the Communist Party of Kazakhstan. “Actually, last year, the government has shown it was preparing for the coming parliamentary elections. However, it slightly resembles imitation of political activity, because the question is not when the elections will be conducted; the question is who will be in the new parliament. If we base on the fact that no new interesting parties have emerged, and the competition will be taking place among pro-presidential parties, so, the forthcoming election campaign will be even more dull than the previous one,” Satpayev notes.

In accordance with the Kazakhstan’s legislation, the president can make a decision on dissolving the Mazhilis after consultations with the chairs of the both parliamentary chambers and the prime minister. Meanwhile, new elections are to be appointed by the president simultaneously with making a decision on early termination of the parliament’s powers. The elections are to be held within two months after making the decision. The term of the current parliament is to complete this fall. The parliament consists of 107 members, 98 of them were elected at the early elections on January 15, 2012. Then, the Nur Otan Party received 83 mandates, Ak Zhol 8 mandates, the Communist People’s Party of Kazakhstan 7 mandates. Nine more seats were given to delegates from the People’s Assembly of Kazakhstan on January 16, 2012. The next elections are expected to be held in March.

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