Public discussions of amendments to the Constitution are supposed to result in a nationwide consensus. Chairman of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of Belarus Vladimir Andreichenko made the statement as the sixth session of the seventh-convocation House of Representatives opened on 4 October, BelTA has learned.
Vladimir Andreichenko said: “17 September was the first time in the history of sovereign Belarus that we celebrated a significant state holiday – People's Unity Day. The day is a symbol of maturity and self-sufficiency of the Belarusian nation, who holds the memory of the past sacred while confidently looking into the future. The establishment of the new tradition by the head of state is an act of restoration of historical justice, which means a great deal to our citizens. It is the desire for justice that has always united Belarusians in fateful moments of history. The desire unites us now, too. It is the foundation of joint efforts of the state and the society in defending the sovereignty, developing the economy, realizing political and social changes.”
In his words, members of the parliament have to contribute to it as well. Participation in the development of the draft Constitution and preparation for the constitutional reform will remain key priorities. The development of the bill on amending the Constitution was an important stage in this work. The introduction of the single voting day will allow municipal authorities to focus on the key thing – the organization of public debates about constitutional innovations and the organization of a national referendum in a way able to produce a nationwide consensus.
Vladimir Andreichenko stressed that peace is truly fragile. “Through their own experience Belarusians have seen that the routine way of life that may seem unshakable to us may come crashing down in a moment. We have to constantly remember and talk about it, particularly to young people. No one but us will take care of Belarus' prosperity. It is necessary to deliver this truth to the people during the nationwide discussion of the draft Constitution, in which MPs will play the leading role,” he explained. “In addition to explaining the suggested changes we should get objective information about the opinion of the voters about these matters. However, it can be done only together if we preserve the unity of purpose and actions.”
The speaker added that a lot depends on how well interaction with voters is established. “The protection of constitutional rights and freedoms of our citizens is comparable to national security. Every MP acquires unique experience by working with voters. You analyze the situation, see bottlenecks in legislation, untapped resources of municipal authorities, and the potential of the public initiative. All your observations and remarks should be definitely implemented in the course of amending the law on petitions of individuals and corporations. The relevant bill has already been submitted to the House of Representatives of the National Assembly. The most important thing is to listen and hear people, be able to empathize with them, and treat their problems as your own. It is the essence of the social state and one of the pillars that support people's unity,” he stated. “The country will have to make a fateful choice next year. A lot will depend on us. Results of the republican referendum have to be a conscious and responsible decision of the nation that writes its own history on its own.”