Our Analytics 15 september — 10:05

Control and direct democracy of Ilham Aliyev (Following President's speeches)

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BY ECONOMY SECTION

The most intriguing part of yesterday's sensational conversation between Ilham Aliyev and the newly appointed heads of the Jalilabad and Shamkir districts sounded at the end and concerned public control.

In fact, the President, in addition to the implementation of the mechanism of public control through traditional media and NGO regulators, as well as interactive communication in the government-citizen format, unequivocally pointed out the need to implement the provisions of the Azerbaijani Law 'On public participation' dated November 22, 2013 (No. 816-IVQ), as amended in 2019. The normative legal act regulates such institutions as 'public council,' introduces the concepts of 'public hearing', 'public discussion.'

The law postulates the need for 'an independent assessment of draft legal acts with the participation of persons who took part in their preparation, as well as civil society institutions, individual citizens, experts and specialists.'

It is clear that in practice such activities are extremely rare, one might say they have not taken root, but the need to launch this mechanism has become ripe, at least since the last parliamentary elections.

Moreover, modern technologies have unexpectedly made their own amendments to this activity, which was previously considered the prerogative of public and non-profit legal entities. Now relations between the state and citizens can be built directly, without intermediaries, through the ASAN Xidmət systems.

How can this work?

As well as other requests to the executive branch, the ASAN service could organise a portal for the accumulation of initiatives of any kind.

For example, it can be a request from citizens to build a school, install/repair a water supply system, prohibit commercial construction, or, on the contrary, design a park with an area for street sports, and so on. Also, on such a portal, one can collect complaints about the authorities, suggestions and recommendations for improving their activities, challenge their decisions, in a word, show any public initiative and activity.

Depending on the number of signatories of such petitions/appeals, it will be seen online for officials and public figures which of the announced initiatives requires implementation in practice or at least a detailed public discussion.

All this information can be seen by the structures of government and control in Baku, as well as adjusting the work of the executive branch at the local level.

Therefore, such a portal of public initiatives on the ground will not only be an instrument of qualitative dynamics in the social activity of citizens, but also an incentive for the work of authorities -- their independent controller. Such direct democracy in practice.

Let's hope that the President's proposal will come true.

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