Astana [Kazakhstan], January 27 (ANI): Newly elected President of Kazakhstan, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev announced that an early election for the lower chamber of the parliament will take place on March 19, reported The Astana Times citing Akorda press service.
After dissolving the Mazhilis and maslikhats in the first half of last year in his state-to-the-nation address, Tokayev said, "Thus, the period from the announcement of this initiative to the voting day will be more than six months. During the years of independence, candidates and political parties have never had so much time to prepare for an election campaign."
The deputies of the maslikhats at all levels will be appointed by the Central Election Commission.
The lower chamber's election will enter its final stage in the political renewal cycle initiated by the President, which started with a presidential election on November 20 and continued with the upper chamber of the Parliament, the Senate election, on January 14, as per The Astana Times report.
"The holding of early elections to the Mazhilis and maslikhats is dictated by the logic of the constitutional reform, supported by citizens at the national referendum. According to its results, our country moved to new, more fair, and more competitive rules of formation of the representative branches of power," said Tokayev.
"These elections will embody the changes taking place in society and will give a strong impetus to further modernization of our political system," his statement read.
The upcoming Mazhilis election will implement the amendments to the Constitution that were adopted as a result of the national referendum that took place on June 5, according to The Astana Times.
The election of the maslikhats of districts and cities of national importance will also be held under a mixed electoral system, with a 50/50 ratio.
The constitutional reform also alleviated the party registration process, reducing the registration threshold fourfold from 20,000 to 5,000 members. The minimum requirement for the number of regional party representations was also reduced from 600 to 200 people.
Two new parties, the Baitak party and the Respublica Party, have registered since the amendments came into force. Overall, seven parties are now registered.
One of the electoral changes is the addition of the 'against all' column, the reduction of the threshold for parties to enter the Mazhilis from seven to five per cent, and the legislative establishment of a 30 per cent quota for women, youth, and persons with special needs in the distribution of deputy mandates, reported The Astana Times. (ANI)