Dr. Mehmood Ul Hassan Khan
According to the Uzbekistan’s Central Election Commission (UCEC), parliamentary and municipal/district/city elections will be held on December 22, 2019. The UCEC has already announced new “Electoral Code” for the upcoming elections 2019. It completely and equally supports all the five participating political parties to contest the elections 2019. It also ensures elements of fair, free and transparency in the upcoming elections. It has strategic importance for the Republic of Uzbekistan.
The Republic of Uzbekistan has been further reformed by introducing and implementing various reforms in every field. Its macro-economy has been further liberalized. Its politics has been further articulated. Its social fabric has been further modernized due to which it has now more tolerant, responsive and open. Now new elections have been campaigned on the motto “New Uzbekistan, New Elections”.
Electioneering has been started in the Republic of Uzbekistan. All the five political parties are trying their levels best to attract the young people in the ongoing battle of political supremacy through dominance of ballots over bullets.
Democracy stands for political decency and accommodation due to which Uzbekistan being a true democratic country, “character assassination” is not allowed in every election in the country. There has been no concept of engineered elections, invisible hand, manipulations or maneuverings in every level of political contest in the country.
To maintain highest levels of transparency and equal opportunity, every political party has equal chance/representation at national radio/TV or mass media outlets. There is no discrimination. The UCEC obliges every political party in terms of indoor and outdoor political advertising facility (free of cost) by issuing/publishing equal numbers of posters, banners and pamphlets in equal sizes which provides equal play field to every political party in the elections.
To maintain highest levels of monitoring and supervision in support of conducting a fair, free and transparent election, the UCEC gets appointed a representative of every political party at every polling station. For larger showcasing of its openness, imparity and functionality the UCEC invites so many regional as well as international election observers who share their absolute independence during the whole electioneering and its results.
Politics is not zero-sum game in Uzbekistan rather it is a game changer. Politics stands for development not destruction. Politics portrays spirits of positivity, productivity, prosperity, progression and persuasions of people’s welfare. Participation of five different political parties clearly shows elements of political diversity, determination and dynamics covering all aspects of its national philosophy and geography.
All participating five political parties cover wider spectrum mainly, social justice, rule of the law, women empowerment, job creation, anti-corruption, economic prosperity and sustainability, agricultural revolution and further politicization and democratization. There are more than 120 different ethnic groups and identities live in Uzbekistan but not a single ethnic or religious political party is allowed to participate in the elections. It purifies its political course and national narrative from any unexpected exploitation of the non-state actors.
Western democracies have now been dominating by rightest philosophies, having white-supremacy phobias. Most of the political parties belonging to Eastern and Central Europe have been polluting their so called rich democratic norms by misusing element of Islamophobia. Uzbekistan, the land of humanity and equal opportunity prohibits all acts of human discrimination, disgracefulness and disintegration and believes in divinity and dignity of humanity even in its political system for centuries.
Moreover, Western propaganda about so called absence of real opposition party in the country is baseless and false accusations because every political party has its own manifestation, aims and objectives with any misconception, discrimination, disinformation, deformity and defection.
Every political party has different political goals but must share common one thing i.e. true patriotisms and national protectionism which has nothing to do with so called Western labeling of marginalization of democratic spirits. Uzbekistan is a true democratic country although it has its own unique and functional democratic system for century which is still very much relevance decreasing pains of its people, the real owners of its political system. Democracy undoubtedly stands for delivery of the system and Uzbekistan is the real champion of deliverance despite having different democratic system in its country.
Media and civil society always play very important role in the elections in the country. Media does not support any single political party or specific candidate and maintains its total imparity. Media is entitled to encourage a positive political culture in the country due to which every election is contested with decency having equal opportunity. Dawn of civil society is a unique phenomenon in Uzbekistan. It strives hard to protect basic rights of its people. It promotes elements of human survival among the general masses. It is forward looking. It is dynamic too.
Democracy drives its strength from education, rule of the law, separation of power, checks and balances, independent judiciary & election commission, good governance, absence of corruption, dynamic political system and above all respect of humanity and fortunately, Uzbekistan is blessed with all these elements.
It has one of the highest rates of literacy in the CIS. It shares one of the highest women empowerment ratios among the CIS which has further strengthened by the UCEC to order 33 percent of candidate’s nominations from the womanhood by all the political parties in the upcoming elections.
Democracy matures from ratification of flaws in the political system. Now, President of Uzbekistan H.E. Shavkat Mirziyoyev has banned on “Reserve Seats/Selection” which is indeed a giant step towards achieving further politicization and democratization in the country. Reserve set mechanism is an anti-democratic practices which pullouts concept of free choice, fair-play and equal opportunity. All the political parties will now contest for 150 seats instead of 135 seats in the upcoming elections.
There is no scope for any independent candidate to contest the elections which has some valid reasons in case of Uzbekistan and of course not a bar on democracy as most of western media projects. Independent candidacy always poses a serious threat to political systems prevailing in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Brazil and even in the USA.
It has deteriorating implications in the democracy. So in order to purify all the faulty lines from Uzbekistan’s political system, independent candidates are not allowed to contest the elections. It does not decrease political choice or diversity rather it enhances wise political decision making among the voters.
The Republic of Uzbekistan is the most populated country in the CIS which also has largest youth. It has one of the highest voting turn-out in the region which shows vast participation of its people in the political process. Democracy is the ideal combination of rights and responsibilities due to which voting has been mandatory in Uzbekistan because every vote is counted and weighted too. Every new voter is greeted with flowers, wrist watch and other gifts in all the polling stations in the country.
Being prominent regional expert of Uzbekistan & CIS I expect that upcoming election will determine pace of further process of politicization and democratization in the Republic of Uzbekistan and elsewhere in the region. There will be a genuine political contest with no one preferable.
Margin of political victory may be decreased because of close contest throughout the country. National drive of decentralization will be further strengthened. Direct electioneering will be giant step for further modernization of its society, politics, financial autonomy, administration and rule of the law. Participation of new two million young voters will play a decisive role in the upcoming elections to be held on December 22, 2019.