This week president Bakiev was informed about the outcomes of the nationwide discussion on the project of new Kyrgyz Constitution which includes several variants of governmental reform.
In spite of the deadly hot weather the initiators of the reform visited all regions of Kyrgyzstan. The head of the working group, former general prosecutor Azimbek Beknazarov, according to his words, has an intention to polish all the three drafts of the Constitution, so that on the 1st of August to present them to Kurmanbek Bakiev.
Beknazarov recently made an attempt to reach as many people in Kyrgyzstan as possible to spread the word about the work of the constitutional committee. But so far it’s to early to judge whether the attempt was a successful one. Beknazarov claims that after meeting people in southern regions of the country he came up with the conclusion that majority there supports the variant of the Constitution that grants more power to the president of the country. According to the former general prosecutor, this signifies that officials conducted a solid campaign aimed at “advertising’ the president on the largest scale possible.
Beknazarov though is not going to give up. After being kicked out from his official position he is keen on restricting presidential powers in the draft of the new constitution.
“Whichever draft is accepted for implementation I’m, as the main “composer” of the new Constitution, have an intention to reach my goal, namely to impose certain restrictions on the president. In each of the three drafts there is a chapter prohibiting Kyrgyz president to fire general prosecutors as well as local judges. Or another example: Bakiev doesn’t hesitate saying that he would not mind to be in charge of an executive branch of power. If he is really positive about that, than I as a member of Parliament will demand him to show up in Jogorku Kenesh whenever we, deputies, want to address questions to him,”-comments Beknazarov to NewEurasia.
One general conclusion pops up in this situation: after all revisions of the new Constitution are made Kyrgyz president will be officially turned into a scapegoat. It may partly be his own fault since almost every reformist suffers consequences of his reforms. Especially, considering the fact that the whole process of drafting yet another Constitution was assigned to a long standing opponent and a rather scandalous political personality- Azimbek Beknazarov. This endeavor is already considered to be rather risky, since Beknazarov announced that another radical intention of him was to eliminate the official status of the Russian language form the Constitution.
While addressing this issue Beknazarov said : “ We talked with the president about the status of the Russian language in the country. He was very keen on keeping it as an official one, but after all we can probably grant some kind of a status like the language of international communication to the Russian. I think it’d be enough. Who cares, after all, everyone’s already gone”.
Beknazarov’s flamboyancy grows as he generously offers to grant Kyrgyz citizenship to those who left the country a while ago and than, for some reason, chose to come back. It’ll work though only for ethnic Kyrgyz. No exclusions are made by Beknazarov other nationalities. Who cares about human rights when such an extraordinary person as Azimbek Beknazarov is in charge of drafting the main legislature documents?
Analysts already warned that in the current situation the radicalism employed by Beknazarov (someone who is less politically correct refers to it as a stupidity) can lead to some fatal consequences.
In general the whole issue of constitutional drafting is getting more and more complicated. Trying to set a referendum, which main question will be “Which form of the government you support?” the official power is taking a risk. Not being fully aware about causes and consequences people in Kyrgyzstan can make a choice that will again lead to political clashes and escalation of the situation. It’s vary possible that this option is very appealing to the opponents of the current president since it’s much easier to manipulate public opinion in a situation of uncertainty and growing instability.
It’s also possible that in case the draft of the Constitution is sent to the parliament the process of adopting it will be standing idle for a while. At least until the year 2009 when the mandate of the current parliament is over. Now MPs in Kyrgyzstan seem to be the group indeed longing for stability since, as it turned out after the “tulip” revolution, drastic changes hardly do any good to small but terribly complicated states.