11.02.2022, 15:52
A+ Analytics

Kazakhstan needs real political modernization, not cosmetic changes

The events of the "January tragedy" prove the impossibility of a stable development of the political system of Kazakhstan in the previous conditions without a radical transformation of the role and activities of traditional parties and political organizations of the republic. The example of the history of Ukraine in 2014 shows the danger of the consequences of the low authority of the authorities, as well as the inability of the country's leaders, and, in general, the ruling elite, political parties to win the trust of citizens and consolidate society around the prospects of social progress. Now these fears concern Nur-Otan most of all, which since 1999 has been considered the party in power.

Фотография с открытых источников

The situation around this party is very complicated, and it can be characterized by the following words: "It's a pity to quit and it's very difficult to carry." This phrase well reflects the attitude of the President of the country towards the Nur Otan party, who noted a month ago that “after some time, perhaps by the end of this year, we will return to the question of the expediency of my further chairmanship in Nur Otan.
An elementary review of comments on social networks, under interviews and news of Kazakhstan shows that the rhetoric of certain groups of the population sounds louder and sharper in relation to officials, the police and the state apparatus of the country. Even a superficial analysis of people's opinions, social surveys show the need of Kazakhstanis to reconsider the role and responsibility of political parties, social movements and opposition.

The low authority of leaders at all levels, deputies, ministers and other representatives of power among citizens can come back to haunt us all, since the people of Kazakhstan are needed not only to pay taxes and properly vote in elections, but also to protect the independence and territorial integrity of the country.

The lack of the possibility of systemic transformation, the correct "transmission" of the opinion of the population to the authorities clearly demonstrates the inoperability of the existing system of political communication. The protests of the initial stage in January 2022 directly showed the absence of reliable “channels of communication” between the population and the elite, represented by the leaders of political parties and movements. In most cases, city leaders, officials, deputies did not show courage and determination to establish a dialogue with peaceful protesters, which led to a vacuum of power and information, and then to instability, looting, and rampant radical elements.

But if you look closely, the signs of a crisis in the management system, expressed in the chronic inability of government officials to make responsible decisions, were noticed long before these events. The whole of last year was actually marked by examples of forced interference by the President of Kazakhstan in current local affairs. Sometimes questions of the level of the deputy akim of the city or the deputy minister found their solution only after the words and personal instructions of the head of state, which gave rise to bewilderment in society.

So, only after putting the president of the country under personal control, it was possible to more or less solve the problems of the slow pace of vaccination, the increase in prices for diesel fuel, the inefficient activities of the UAPF, and even illegally felled trees near the shopping center in Almaty. This is direct evidence of the failure of officials, from an ordinary civil servant to the regional akim, to perform their direct functions.

Obviously, a new start for Kazakhstan requires a rethinking of such important issues as the registration and admission of new parties to elections, the legalization of the work of opposition movements, the revision of the work of the parliament and its composition, the reassessment of the work of local maslikhats and the status of a deputy of a representative body, which should work for the prosperity of the country, but not for their wages in millions of tenge, state cars and apartments. According to journalists, about 90 million tenge is spent annually on the maintenance of one member of parliament. It is easy to calculate that more than fourteen billion tenge are spent on all 156 deputies of the Senate and Mazhilis, which must be multiplied by the maintenance of a large number of assistants, administrative staff, utility costs.

The Nur Otan Party was originally conceived as a leader and responsible association of political progress and modernization. Its members, the activists of the party, have always been entrusted with the task of a reliable and open "channel of communication" between the authorities and the population, business. However, the political events of the current history have shown the need to reassess the role and place of this party in the new Kazakhstan.

Repentance and recognition of mistakes will not save and restore the former attitude and trust of the population, especially in the face of constant corruption scandals, the ambiguous behavior of high-ranking party members. The vague reaction of the party to the absence of its top leaders at parliamentary meetings, their refusal to participate in the discussion of the future of the country's most massive political association, only exacerbates the situation of Nur-Otan, making its prospects very vague.

The "duplicity" of some deputies of the party during the voting on the status of the ex-leader only confirms the need to create new parties that claim the status of "parties of power". Not only new slogans are required, but also new faces that have not stained themselves with corruption crimes, dubious decisions in the period of the former political reality of Kazakhstan.

If the legality of Nur Otan can still be somehow ensured by traditional administrative methods of preventing competition in elections, the lack of reforms in the registration of new parties, then issues of legitimacy, respect and trust on the part of the population require a complete rethinking of the current state of the party.
Unfortunately, it must be stated that the most massive party in the country, vested with all the powers to maintain peace and stability in Kazakhstan, has not stood the test of time, power, or the huge financial resources annually allocated to the party from the budget.

It would be logical if the party members themselves, including deputies from Nur-Otan, without waiting for the traditional order or the initiative of the head of state, begin a complex process of recognizing their shortcomings before society.

It can be summarized that examples of the low performance of officials confirm the urgent need for political and managerial reforms. Kazakhstan, like air, needs a new stage of modernization of the entire social and economic system of the country. Decisive steps towards a radical transformation of relations between the state apparatus and the population, business can restore citizens' trust in government at all hierarchical levels.

In turn, the era of transition can be a profitable time for new and ambitious political leaders, who now have the opportunity to fill the vacuum that formed during the “hothouse” conditions in which traditional pro-government parties and public organizations lived and rested.

In this regard, the promotion and emergence of such political parties, movements, leaders, which must take responsibility for establishing first “communication channels”, and then cooperation between society and government, becomes especially important. Both a revision of the status and a fresh look at the ideology of the current political parties and movements become inevitable.