Posted: 17.04.2024 17:38:00

Opinion: real leader, rather than figurehead, always been in power in Belarus

The modern Constitution of Belarus, which envisages strong presidential power, is a consequence of the country’s special historical path – as stated by political expert Yuri Shevtsov, the Director of the European Integration Centre, in his talk with Alfa Radio

The expert noted that the Belarusian system of government and state management had not been born from scratch, “It was being formed during the post-war years, and we had our own peculiar feature within the BSSR and the Soviet Union: a leader – whether it was Mazurov, Masherov or someone else – was of major importance for us. In Belarus, there has always been a leader in power who is not a figurehead but who seeks to reach out directly to the people. Our older generation probably remember how Masherov flew by helicopter over Belarus. That is, our system of government was formed based on the WWII results.”

According to Mr. Shevtsov, the modern Constitution of Belarus – which envisages strong presidential power – has become a consequence of the country’s special historical path. “At the current stage, this path has a peculiar feature as well: the possibility for those wishing to be politically active is being searched for,” he explained.

The expert added that there are quite many Belarusians, especially young people, who are looking for themselves in politics, but who do not know how to integrate into the system of government. “We need to find a place for these active and initiative people now, and this is what we call an increase in the importance of Parliament. I do not think that there may be too much increase in the situation we are in, but some changes are obvious. Grassroots activism has begun to find itself in institutional forms through Parliament, and this is exactly what the Constitution outlines,” Mr. Shevtsov stressed.