Uzbekistan’s Center for Strategy Development Reports on the Dialogue with Citizens
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan, April 5, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Public discussions concerning proposed constitutional reforms in Uzbekistan are taking place across the country ahead of the national referendum on Sunday 30 April.
Last week, two notable events took place.
In Bukhara, the Center for Economic Research and Reforms organised a round table discussion entitled “Priorities for institutional reforms: Uzbekistan as a social state”.
Participants included Obid Khakimov, the Director of the Center for Economic Research and Reforms; Erkin Mukhitdinov, the first Deputy Minister of Employment and Labor Relations; and Usmon Sharifkhodjaev, the first Deputy Minister of Pre-School and School Education; together with scholars and NGO representatives.
The discussion covered the significant social reforms that citizens would benefit from under the renewed constitution. The state’s new responsibilities would include delivering sustainable economic growth, implementing measures to reduce poverty, creating decent living standards and providing food security.
In Samarkand, Feruza Esmatova, the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Oliy Majlis, held another round table focused on “The constitution and the priority of human rights”. Speakers included Robakhon Makhmudova, the first Deputy Chairman of the Supreme Court, as well as Constitutional Court judges, lawyers and professors.
The participants considered how the constitutional reforms would provide greater protection to the rights of all citizens, including freedom of speech, media and assembly, as well as the promotion of democratic values and equality within Uzbekistan’s population.
Two major events are planned for mid-April. In Tashkent, a round table will focus on the protection of property rights and entrepreneurs (10 April), while a discussion about reforming the organization of state power will take place in Namangan on 14 April.
Talking about the ongoing programme of events, Jakhongir Shirinov, chairman of the Legislative Chamber Committee responsible for the constitutional reforms, said: “The constitutional reform campaign is now well underway, with citizens and political parties discussing the proposed changes across the country.”
“If the reforms are endorsed by the referendum later this month, more than 65% of the existing constitution will be updated with new norms and articles, primarily focusing on protecting and extending citizens’ rights. There are still a number of important areas awaiting discussion in the coming weeks, and I hope as many people as possible have the chance to add their voices to the national debate.”