Emilia Slabunova: Responsibility of the opposition should be peaceful and lawful change of power
YABLOKO leader spoke at the 4th Congress of the Russian Association of Political Consultants
Press Release, 14.04.2017
“The responsibility of the opposition is to peacefully and lawfully achieve a change of power and the system in the country”, YABLOKO leader Emilia Slabunova said at the 4th Congress of the Russian Association of Political Consultants. The event is taking place these days in Moscow.
According to Slabunova, representatives of the opposition bear this responsibility before the voters, the country, their own conscience and the future.
She also noted that the political responsibility of a party should be, first of all, in giving honest assessments. Thus, YABLOKO insists on the state’s clear rejection of the Bolshevik and Stalinist heritage and giving political and legal assessment to those policies.
Slabunova noted that YABLOKO gave an honest assessment of present situation: impossibility to improve or amend the system. “We do not intend to promise people a cardinal improvement in life without changing the system and the present policies that led to all our difficulties. This would be irresponsible populism,” she said.
Slabunova stressed that the only way to change the system without violence would be through elections. “We regard any calls of some politicians to non-participation in elections as a manifestation of political irresponsibility,” Emilia Slabunova said.
According to Slabunova, today the essence of the electoral process has been diluted. “Real democracy is always an uncertainty of results with a certainty of procedures. And we in Russia have the opposite situation. In Russia the goal of the elections is not the formation of power, let alone its change, but only a demonstration of support for the present policies,” she noted.
It is difficult to win over the system, because whenever a real threat arises, the government does everything to through the opposition out of the process. The instruments of government here are as follows: to prohibit a rally, withdraw the opposition from elections, not to register oppositional candidates, remove an independent mayor, imprison people, etc.
Slabunova told that YABLOKO, as a politically responsible party, had prepared a package of over 40 proposals on changing the electoral legislation. All of them had been handed to the Central Electoral Commission. She also noted that YABLOKO had not recognised the results of the State Duma elections.
YABLOKO leader said that the modern electoral process in Russia represented “rolling back into archaic”. Democracy had been fought by means of pseudo-democracy, there had been pseudo-elections instead of elections and often pseudo-parties had been replacing real parties, Slabunova noted.
Slabunova stressed that this had conditioned a gap between Russia and the Western countries, and very quickly this gap might become insurmountable. According to her, the reasons for such stagnation were political, and a breakthrough could be made only through a change of power.
The Russian Association of Policy Consultants was established in 2014 as the first professional association of Russian political consultants working for election campaigns. The mission of the Association is to assist the process of formation of law-governed democratic state in Russia.