Kyrgyzstan after transition in two years

International NewspapersKyrgyzstan marked the second anniversary of the April events of 2010 that had started transition to parliamentary democracy. On April 7, 2012 the whole nation paid tribute to eighty seven stoics slain during peaceful protest against the authoritarian, corrupt and criminal regime of K.Bakiyev. Speaking during the opening ceremony of the commemorating monument in Bishkek the President of the Kyrgyz Republic Almazbek Atambaev noted those heroes sacrificed lives for freedom and justice that all Kyrgyzstanis value the most and will preserve by any price in the future. Notably, the political transition was achieved in a relatively short term of less than two years to form anew all three branches of state power. It successfully ended on 1 December 2011 when Mr. Almazbek Atambaev was sworn in to be the next President of the Kyrgyz Republic. The Head of State won unanimously in the first round of the presidential race in October 2011. The international observers, including the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, endorsed the presidential elections as democratic. With the transition process completed, the leadership of Kyrgyzstan focuses on implementation of economic policy that should in short term yield tangible improvements in lives and well-being of ordinary citizens. *** Since April 2010, fundamental political reforms were carried out to restore democracy in the country. In June 2010 Kyrgyzstan became the parliamentary republic in Central Asia in the wake of the adoption of the new Constitution at the nationwide referendum. At the same time, Mrs. Roza Otunbaeva was voted to be the country’s President for transition period. In October 2010, parliamentary elections were held in which all political parties, including the parties affiliated with the ousted regime, were allowed to take part. The abovementioned political events were positively assessed by international observers as well. The judiciary reform is also underway as Kyrgyzstan formed a Council on selection of judges for the Supreme Court and local courts. It is unanimously understood in Kyrgyzstan that the independent, competent and credible judicial branch plays a crucial role in further development of democracy and free market economy. At the same time, the reform of courts slowed down, mainly, because of the need to collect and examine policy options available from best international practice to produce one integrated, workable recipe. The maturing civil society and free press in Kyrgyzstan have lately enhanced their roles in promoting democratic changes and performing public oversight of the state power branches. The Government of Kyrgyzstan has been actively working to cushion and contain negative effects on peace, security and economy of the June 2010 interethnic conflict in the southern provinces that was deliberately provoked by certain third party elements. While some of the master-minders, instigators and active participants of the conflict were already convicted, the law enforcement agencies of Kyrgyzstan do not stop their search to bring to justice other responsible people. The state authorities at central and local levels jointly with the civil activists lead a reconciliation process between the Kyrgyz and Uzbek communities. In the meantime, the Government of Kyrgyzstan maintains a constructive cooperation with the international community on conduct of independent inquiry and implementation of recommendations.
Despite successful democratic reforms, Kyrgyzstan remains challenged by the ill-fated legacy of the K.Bakiyev’s rule. It should be noted that along with the restrictions of political freedoms, social injustices and economic hurdles, pervasive corruption and high crime were the very causes of the April 2010 popular uprising. The rising economic inequality and exacerbating poverty, low income, lack of job opportunities, especially for the educated youth, are to name a few. Since the Kyrgyz causes closely resonate with those of the “Arab spring”, some say that the latter took roots and aspirations from Kyrgyzstan.
Presently, the Government of Kyrgyzstan is wholly occupied with addressing socio-economic conditions through its program “Stability and Decent Life”. The program is centered on economic well-being and security of each and every citizen of Kyrgyzstan. The Government’s economic strategy is directed at rapid attainment of sustainable economic growth.
The state policies, among others, include the optimized economic governance as well as fight against corruption and crime in order to contain their negative impact on daily life, including business activity. It is believed that such policies create the very environment conducive for legalization of shadow economy and inflow of foreign direct investments. At the same time, the Government of Kyrgyzstan plans expansive development of infrastructure that is expected to be financed by concessional borrowing from international financial institutions and public private arrangements.
In conclusion, Kyrgyzstan’s swift transition has set a number of positive precedents, including good substantive results. With a painful record of two ousted presidents Kyrgyzstan seems to have so far found its stable and sustainable formula of state governance that is parliamentary democracy, in which all major political forces are engaged. It is remarkable that a woman-President undertook a responsible mission of leading the nation forward in a predominantly Muslim society. The power succession from the President-in-Office to the President-elect for the first time occurred peacefully, in accordance with the state Constitution. These achievements, definitely, distinguish Kyrgyzstan from other Central Asian countries in terms of statehood development model. These political successes are being upheld by some visible improvements in national economy and fight against corruption and crime. Most importantly, the President and Government of the Kyrgyz Republic enjoy unwavering support and faith of population majority and have the political will to make positive changes happen with emphasis on betterment of the socio-economic conditions in the country.