No to aboliting direct mayoral election in Voronezh
Statement by the Voronezh branch of YABLOKO, 14.11.2016
The regional branch of the YABLOKO party considers the initiative of the Voronezh City Duma deputies on abolition of the direct mayoral election in the city of Voronezh another step aimed at the destruction of the democratic institutions and forming a hard-line authoritarian and bureaucratic system of government in Russia.
As a rule such initiatives are preceded by a campaign on discrediting the relevant institutions by means of emasculating their sense and contents but keeping the exterior form. This is exactly what is happening to the election system of all levels right in front of our nose. The authorities successfully substitute election with its imitation by providing financial, informational, and administrative assistance to the candidates, who they nominate, and by exposing independent candidates in every way, by limiting their resources during the election campaign, by rigging vote counting and election results. In fact the election was already cancelled, so it is the question with the elimination of its outer shell which became burdensome to the authorities.
Under the circumstances the statements of the governor and other regional officials on the fall of the Voronezh citizens’ interest in mayoral election look hypocritical. Gentlemen, this is the result which you wished to achieve and worked towards with diligence.
Abolition of mayoral election and abolition of elections of any level is a direct way towards widening the gap between government and people, towards growth of political apathy of people, towards economic slowdown and growth of paternalistic sentiments.
Of course it is easier to amputate an organ affected by a disease than to cure it. However, political surgeons should remember that such a measure may have extremely dangerous consequences for an organism in general and mark the beginning of most unfavourable and irreversible changes. The YABLOKO party firmly opposes any actions aimed at restricting citizens’ rights to participation in political activities and formation of government bodies of all levels granted by Articles 3, 30 and 32 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation. The election must become a real means of expression of people’s will.
Chair of the Voronezh branch of YABLOKO