Uzbeks go to polls on 22 Dec for “New Uzbekistan: Envoy

PRADEEP RANA | NEW DELHI
Nearly 500 international observers and as many media entities will oversee the upcoming parliamentary elections In Uzbekistan on 22 December as President Shavkat Mirziyoyev promises to bring about a “New Uzbekistan” through sweeping reforms in the country.
“Uzbekistan has undergone a wide ranging transformation in last three years since President  Mirziyoyev has ushered development, transparency and more open foreign policy after he took office in December 2016,” Farhod Arziev Uzbek Ambassador  to India said while briefing reporters here at Foreign Correspondents Club of South Asia.
“The administration is now more open, more transparent and more willing take painful and difficult questions,’ Ambassador Arziev told reporters.
Ambassador said a voting station at the Embassy of Uzbekistan in India will be set up for the citizens of Uzbekistan who are present in India.
Five political parties will participate in the parliamentary elections for 150-seat Legislative Assembly – the lower chamber of the Uzbek parliament, which consists of the Senate and the Legislative Assembly. Election campaign was announced on 20 September.
“New Uzbekistan, new elections” is the motto for the first parliamentary elections. CEC of Uzbekistan recently launched mobile application “Saylov-2019” (Election-2019) where people can find answers to their queries regarding the election procedure, Ambassador Arziev said
Five registered political parties are the National Revival Party, the People’s Democratic Party, the Liberal Democratic Party of Uzbekistan, the Adolat (Justice) Social Democratic Party and the Ecological Party.
Besides the Legislative Chamber, elections for regional, city and district councils will also be held on the same day. Some 20 million people will participate in the elections, including 2 million youth who will vote for the first time. Nearly 10,000 ballot boxes will be used in 150 separate constituencies throughout the country.
More than 500 international observers, including from international and regional organizations are expected to monitor over the voting processes on elections day. More than 500 Mass Media representatives have already been accredited as of beginning of November.
From October 18 to November 7, political parties hold their congresses to approved their candidates for the lower house of parliament and local councils. The right to nominate candidates for deputies belongs exclusively to political parties.
After the registration of candidates for deputies, candidates familiarize voters with the election programs and win their support.
For the election of deputies of the Legislative Chamber, 150 electoral districts are formed, as well as no more than 60 electoral districts for elections to the regional and Tashkent city councils of people’s deputies and no more than 30 electoral districts to district and city councils of people’s deputies.
One deputy (Member of Parliament) is elected from each constituency. Over 6700 constituencies for the election of deputies of local councils, and more than 10 thousand polling stations, including 53 polling stations with representative offices of Uzbekistan in foreign countries, were formed in the republic.

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