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29 January 2020, 14:43
Valentin Starichenok

It is important to reconcile changes with stability

Valentin Starichenok
Valentin Starichenok
Analyst at the Belarusian Institute of Strategic Research (BISR)

The demand for changes should be reconciled with the need for stability, analyst at the Belarusian Institute of Strategic Research (BISR) Valentin Starichenok said during another meeting of the Expert Community project “Constitutional reform in Russia” in BelTA's press center on 29 January.

Today's society is more dynamic, it has new needs and values. Some people might want certain changes, others are interested in stability. “In this case it is important to balance out these two things, because changes can also vary – they can be constructive or can cause instability of the system. However, we cannot disregard the need for changes,” Valentin Starichenok said.

The analyst spoke about the importance of self-fulfillment. “The youth, in particular, want to fulfill themselves, show their worth, get involved in public and political events, and prove themselves. Our state policy is focused on paternalism. I believe that there is some excessive emphasis on paternalistic sentiments among our people. This gives way to apathy, including in political processes, and discourages people from taking charge of their own life and relying on themselves rather than the state,” Valentin Starichenok believes.

The expert also mentioned the value of choice. “If we come to any store, we will see a great choice. People also expect such a variety in the political system even at the subconscious level. In this situation the parliament could become a breeding ground for all kinds of views, alternatives and thus it could offer various perspectives and views to the public,” he added.

Head of the Constitutional Law Chair at Belarusian State University, Doctor of Law, Professor Grigory Vasilevich gave his take on stability and changes. In his view, these terms incorporate the notion of sustainable development. Its dynamics depends, among other things, on the operation of the representative power. After all, it is about public control over the executive power. The constitutional reform in Russia is aimed, inter alia, at raising the efficiency of these two instruments. “There should be a solid centralized power all over the vast territory of the Russian Federation,” the expert believes. He explained that the lack of such power is to blame for different pace of development in different regions. “People want protection of their rights and freedoms and economic prosperity. This requires efficient operation of the government. Thus, the amendments to the Constitution seek to make sure that officials will keep people's needs in focus,” Grigory Vasilevich believes. In this regard, Belarus can be an example to follow, as the power is centralized enough here. “However, this centralization should go hand in hand with greater involvement of representative authorities and local councils of deputies,” the scholar said.

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