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Belarusian People’s Congress

9 Dec 2020

Opinion: The Belarusian People’s Congress is a form of inclusive democracy

Opinion: The Belarusian People’s Congress is a form of inclusive democracy
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MINSK, 9 December (BelTA) – The Belarusian People’s Congress is a form of inclusive democracy, which is very popular these days. It is the opinion of Vadim Gigin, a Candidate of Historical Sciences, an Associate Professor, published by the SB. Belarus Segodnya newspaper, BelTA has learned.

Vadim Gigin said: “The president’s proposal to make the Belarusian People’s Congress a constitutional body is definitely the hottest political piece of news of the last few days. But what is behind it? Is the idea feasible? Essentially Aleksandr Lukashenko formulated the idea that had been in the air for a long time. Virtually at all the dialogue platforms in various parts of our country people have spoken in favor of adding a provision on the Belarusian People’s Congress into the new edition of the Constitution. Historical roots of this body have been repeatedly mentioned. But the opponents always wondered about the congress’s status and authority. These questions are reasonable to a degree. But some opponents went as far as to label the Belarusian People’s Congress as an attribute of authoritarianism. Allow me to disagree with it. Our congress is a consultative body. Such institutions are all the rage across the globe these days. Including in Europe, which deems itself a paragon of the law. The congress is a form of inclusive democracy, a term which is very popular these days. Certainly, in its smart and moderate interpretation.”

Vadim Gigin believes that the modern society is no longer content with conventional representative bodies such as parliaments. It needs more inclusive consultations with citizens. “And they choose their representatives, who do not aspire to grab power but are ready to influence it. Politics is too serious a business to entrust it to one kind of representatives. This is why all kinds of councils, boards, and congresses emerge. The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation is a fine example of a consultative body. And a successful example at that. But the Civic Chamber works all the time while the Belarusian People’s Congress is convened every five years. There is a tangible difference. It is what legislators, political and public figures, law experts, and we, ordinary citizens, will have to work on. It is necessary to regulate in detail how the Belarusian People’s Congress is convened, regulate its status and authority. Some permanent working bodies may emerge later on. On the whole, there is a lot of work ahead of us. But it is what a constitutional reform is all about,” he summed up.

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