Citizens refuse to vote for “demagogues who ignore us and laws"

2014 2014-03-19T14:42:01+0300 2014-03-19T14:42:01+0300 en http://spring96.org/files/images/sources/vybary-gramadziane-3.jpg The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
42 people have signed a petition to the President and Chairperson of the Central Election Commission

42 people have signed a petition to the President and Chairperson of the Central Election Commission

On March 18 a group of citizens from different regions of Belarus announced their refusal to participate in the upcoming local elections. At a meeting with journalists in Minsk they talked about their reasons for mistrust to "puppet" deputies.

These people, who have been affected by the lawlessness in the courts, prosecutor’s offices, police departments, have been working together since 2006, seeking review of civil and criminal cases against themselves or their families. And, as a representative of the campaign, Liudmila Kuchura, told during the meeting, their decision to ignore the election was a response to a request from the President to the Belarusians to be active in the upcoming elections to the local councils.

The citizens sent their position sent to President Aliaksandr Lukashenka and the Chairperson of the Central Commission for Elections and National Referendums Lidziya Yarmoshyna.

"All these years, we have repeatedly privately and collectively addressed our territorial deputies, the Chairman and members of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus, the Council of the Republic. Over the years, none of them has solved a single question in any of our cases. All their runaround replies were limited to saying that it was not in their jurisdiction. Then what is in their jurisdiction? Developing and approving shameful laws that are contrary to the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus and result in the worsening of situation of the country's citizens?

Each of them, to whom we wrote, could have assisted so that our criminal and civil cases were dealt with in accordance with the law. To do this, the Law of the Republic of Belarus "On the Status of the Member of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly, Member of the Council of the Republic " has Article 21 "Participation of the member of the House of Representatives, member of the Council of the Republic in audits of public bodies, associations, institutions, organizations and enterprises" and Article 22 "The right of the member of the House of Representatives, member of the Council of the Republic to demand elimination of violations of the law".

Indeed, according to Article 30 of the Law "On the Status of the Member…", "no one has the right to limit the constitutional powers of the member of the House of Representatives, or the member of the Council of the Republic".

But the deputies themselves ignore their law and it is not surprising, because many of them are former judges and prosecutors.

The role of public control commission of the local executive and administrative bodies in the correction of convicts has been actually reduced to zero, as well as in the implementation of public control over the bodies and institutions executing punishment and other criminal sanctions. In fact, they have become an appendage of the administrations of penal colonies.

As a result, neither deputies of local councils nor those of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of Belarus nor any member of the Council of the Republic uses their power given to them by law for the benefit of citizens. They use it in favor of a handful of those in power. Therefore, it makes no sense to us, the citizens, to support these "puppet" deputies," says the petition.

Also, this group of citizens refuse to participate in the presidential elections in 2015, because, in their opinion, over 20 years the current government has degraded, and violations of constitutional rights and freedoms, the rule of law has become standard practice.

The appeal to the President and the Chairperson of the CEC was signed by 42 people from different regions of Belarus.

Liudmila Kuchura reading a petition to the President and Chairperson of the Central Election Commission
The meeting with journalists was held in the office of the "Tell the Truth!" campaign

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