• From the street to the Parliament: A growing democracy | Cihan Sultanoglu

    28 Sep 2012

    Social mobilization in Iskra Village, Kyrgyzstan. Photo: UNDP Kyrgyzstan
    Social mobilization in Iskra Village, Kyrgyzstan. Photo: UNDP Kyrgyzstan

    Kyrgyzstan has become the first country in Central Asia to adopt a parliamentary democracy and UNDP, a key partner in the country since its independence in 1991, played an essential role in helping draft the country’s new constitution.

    The latest changes in government, in September 2012, were carried out fully in line with this new constitution, and Kyrgyzstan saw a smooth and peaceful transfer of power.

    UNDP helped organize parliamentary hearings, trainings and study visits for the members of parliament and staff.  We also supported the creation of parliamentary information channels, such as a website, a dedicated radio and TV service. We will continue to work with the Parliament to improve the budgetary process and strengthen the audit system – to further promote accountability.

    Today, Kyrgyzstan’s government and parliament are closer to representing the voters’ will than anywhere else in Central Asia.  As Parliament Speaker Asylbek Jeenbekov recently said, “Kyrgyzstan is steadily moving from an aggressive street democracy to a parliamentary democracy”.

    However, high levels of poverty – touching nearly 50% of the population in some regions – youth unemployment, low participation of women in government, corruption, drug trafficking, ethnic tensions and environmental pollution are still challenges the country must face.

    UNDP will continue to support the Government of Kyrgyzstan in establishing a sound parliamentary democracy and work with governments, civil society, the private sector and minorities and other vulnerable groups across all of Central Asia so that the significant development potential of the region can be realised.

    Talk to us: In your opinion, are Kyrgyz state institutions now robust enough to ensure the rule of law?


About the author
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Cihan Sultanoglu is UN Assistant Secretary General and Director of UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Europe and Commonwealth of Independent States.

 

UNDP in Europe & CIS
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