Visit of Uzbekistan by Chief Editor Interaction Mr. Nusrat Mirza
As an International Election Observer For Presidential Election—– 4th December 2016
The Election Commission of Uzbekistan chaired by Mirza Ulaq Baig on 28th November2016 qualified Four Candidates to contest the presidential Election on 4th Secember 2016. This post fall vacant after the natural death of Islam Karimov, most popular person of Uzbekistan who changed the life and status of Uzbeks to the level of Europe. Among them were:
Sarvar Sadullaevich Otamuratov from Milly Tiklanish Democratic Party of Uzbekistan; Shavkat Miromonovich Mirziyoyev from the Movement of Entrepreneurs and Businesspeople – the Liberal Democratic Party of Uzbekistan; Hatamjon Abdurakhmonovich Ketmonov from the People’s Democratic Party of Uzbekistan; Nariman Madjitovich Umarov from Adolat Social Democratic Party of Uzbekistan.
In accordance with the law, the runners were provided with equal rights to use the media in the manner prescribed by the Central Election Commission. In particular, taking into account the proposals of political parties, each candidate for President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, in order to reach the voters of the basic provisions of their electoral programs, they are provided with free 638 minutes of airtime for each on Uzbekistan and Yoshlar television and radio channels of the National TV and Radio Company, 206 minutes each on the 12 local TV and radio channels of the National TV and Radio Company of Uzbekistan, and 286 minutes on Toshkent TV and radio channel.
Candidates were provided with print space free of charge, in particular in the newspapers Khalq Suzi, Narodnoe Slovo and Pravda Vostoka with 6 pages each, 5 pages each in the papers Ovozi Tojik and Nurly Zhol, as well as 55.5 print space stripes in 30 local newspapers in general. In regions of the country, each candidate was provided with a total of 642 stands by means of outdoor advertising, special constructions, screens, billboards, as well as the opportunity to use electronic monitors 36 throughout the nation for free placement of campaigning videos.
Further, 9,378 polling stations, including 44 under diplomatic and consular missions of the republic in foreign countries, had been established for the elections of President of the Republic of Uzbekistan. Polling stations were provided with all necessary communications, computer and office equipment, law literature. The designated areas are set for secret voting booths and ballot boxes. District election commissions had formed the compositions of precinct election commissions to carry out activities, which attracted more than 98 thousand people. Of these, 69% had previously been directly involved in the work of election commissions, and in this respect, had some experience. Women make up 47.4% of the members of precinct election commissions and 26.7% of the total number of their chairpersons. Special attention was paid to ensure free and transparency of the election campaign, the creation of conditions for wider media access to information relating to the preparation and conduct of the elections of President of the Republic of Uzbekistan. The Central Election Commission has accredited more than 500 representatives of national and foreign media, and about 560 local journalists have been accredited by district election commissions. I was also invited by the Election Commission of Uzbekistan. Gen. Asad Durranni and his wife, Mr. Ghous Bux Mahar, Ms. Nuzhat Parliamentarian, Prof. Zafar Nawaz Jaspal and other were also invited as International Observer.
On 3rd December 2016, an international conference was organized to brief the election system, polling stations, and the laws of the election to the hundreds of Observers gathered from all around the world. The International Observers were spread all around the country to witness the election and voting systems with their own eyes and were free to write down the remarks in the register available in every polling station, they visit. All polling stations had the polling agents of all the four candidates; the list of the voters was pasted on the wall or the board visible to every one. All polling stations had a dispensary for voter patients, if any and a play/ sleeping room for children who come with their mothers. There was staff to look after the children. There was staff to issue ballot paper and transparent but sealed ballot Box. Generally polling stations were in the school, College, Universities and Gymnasium centers.
On 4th December 2016, elections were held in peaceful manner. I visited 9 polling stations in Tashkent city. Polling Station No. 209 (Mirabad District), 453(Mewazar Mahallah), 211, 591, 602(Special School for Gymanastic), 517 & 518(university of Music and Arts), 470 (university of Economics, 28 (Uzbek university of World Languages. In polling station No. 591(little Ring Road), a woman was not allowed to vote because she did not brought the Passport as her identity. She was asked to bring passport. This was fair and was appreciated by me as an international observer. One high blood pressure patient was treated in this polling station. In polling No 518, the doctor asked me to check my blood pressure as no voter patient came to their dispensary within the polling station. The doctor found my blood pressure normal. In every station that I visited, the polling agents were asked if the polling was going on free and fair basis. The polling agents confirmed that polling was transparent, free and fair. Polling ended at exact time. No complaint received from any polling station that I visited about the use of any unfair means. I think the election was democratic, transparent, free and fair. Total votes casted were 87.3% out which Shavqat Miromominovich Mirziyoyoyev obtained 88.61% and others were far behind him; as can be seen in the chart. Turn out seems to be high but it is true as the population of Uzbekistan is 32 million, people are contended what Late President Islam Karimov has done for the people of Uzbekistan and they want to continue the path of the progress and prosperity built by him. They voted to the party and candidate Shavqat Miromominovich Mirziyoyoyev. Congratulations to him.