Posted: 06.02.2024 12:45:10

Pre-election campaigning of candidates for deputies takes place in Belarus

The current election campaign is characterised by high-quality novelty and has a deep meaning

The campaign period is traditionally the brightest and most active stage of electoral campaigns.
It will last until February 24th, inclusive.

                            The President of Belarus,
                           Aleksandr Lukashenko,

“Following Russia’s example, we have also established a constitutionally unified voting day. On this day, deputies of the parliament and local councils will be elected. We have preserved regional, district, and rural councils, as it was in Soviet times. And on March 17th, presidential elections will be held in Russia.
The period is not easy, but as you can see, it is passing 
quietly. I am confident that we will approach these dates calmly and will conduct these events just as calmly.”

At the meeting of the Union State Supreme State
in St. Petersburg, 
on January 29th, 2024

Candidates have been identified

The results of the registration of candidates for deputies of the House of Representatives and local Councils were announced to journalists by Chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC) Igor Karpenko,
“To date, 265 candidates will compete for 110 parliamentary seats in the House of Representatives. Ten of them are under the age of 31. The youngest candidate is 23 years old. 92 candidates are women.”
In addition, the CEC Chairman noted that four pensioners are nominated for deputies of the Parliament, the oldest being 66 years old, as well as one unemployed.
“In general, the competition for a seat in the House of Representatives is 2.4 people per seat,” Igor Karpenko said.
As for candidates for local Councils of Deputies — 18,802 people will run for 12,514 seats. 
“This is about 1.5 people per seat. That is, there is a certain competition here,” the head of the Central Election Commission underlined.

Actively, competitively and openly

Thus, competition in the 2024 elections is recorded in every constituency. Two–three people in each constituency have been nominated as candidates for deputies of regional Councils of Deputies of the twenty-ninth convocation.
Along with that, as many as six candidates have been nominated for the elections to the Minsk City Council of Deputies in one of the constituencies.
As for the election of deputies to the House of Representatives, the competition here will be even more serious. On the whole, from two to four candidates for the deputy mandate have been nominated in each constituency in the regions, while in Minsk, five candidates have been nominated in one of the constituencies, and six candidates in another. 
The assumptions of our country’s opponents about the absence of international observers proved to be untenable. As of January 23rd, the day when a regular session of the Central Election Commission was held, there were already registered 4,439 national observers — and this is only in the territorial district commissions. By that time, 5,411 precinct electoral committees had not yet been established. Therefore, CEC Chairman Igor Karpenko confidently predicted that this figure would grow significantly. As of the time of the session, 58 international observers were registered,
and two days later this figure rose to 73.
According to the Head of the CIS Observer Mission, Secretary General of the Commonwealth of 
Independent States, Sergey Lebedev, this mission alone will include about 150 people. In total, the CEC has prepared about 300 packages of documents for international observers.

Dialogue on equal terms

The current election campaign will be held for the first time and will have a serious analytical component. 
A scientific expert council at the Central Election Commission has been formed, which will help the CEC to analyse the legislation enforcement during the elections.
After all, improvement of electoral legislation is one of the elements for enhancing the electoral system that does not stand still but evolves together with our state, political processes that take place both inside our country and on the external contour. However, innovations are not limited to this only.
Thus, one more public advisory structure of the Central Election Commission has actively started its work. In order to clarify the specifics of the current campaign, members of the Youth Council at the Belarus CEC are holding meetings with young people in the format ‘equal teaches equal’. More than 35 meetings have been held since the beginning of the year. The audience of thematic and dialogue platforms is extensive — academic teaching staff and students of higher educational institutions, students and teachers of secondary, secondary professional and vocational education institutions as well as representatives of working youth.
There are also minor changes in the opening hours of polling stations. CEC Secretary Elena Baldovskaya reminds, 
“It will be possible to vote in the elections of deputies on a single voting day at the polling station at the place of registration (place of residence or place of stay) on February 25th from 8:00 to 20:00. A voter who is unable to take part in voting on this day has the right to vote ahead of time — from February 20th to February 24th. During early voting, polling stations will be open from 12:00 to 19:00 without a lunch break.”  

Vadim Borovik, political analyst,
“The campaigning carried out these days should first of all be perceived as an opportunity for candidates to familiarise voters with their programmes. In other words, candidates should run in the elections with solid programmes, offer concrete solutions to the problems our country faces on the external and internal contours. And at local elections, they need to raise issues of concern for people on the ground. Voters will have a chance to get to know their potential candidates. No one needs campaigning for the sake of campaigning. It is high-quality work at your post that is the best campaign for yourself. To put it simply, the campaign stage of an election is a period of communication. And for voters, it is an opportunity to consciously make their choice in the interests of the Republic of Belarus and our people.”

 By Maksim Osipov