“Armenia may come across shocks”: Discussion about the New Constitution
04.07.2016
13:30
During the complete transition to the new Constitution, which will be held in April 2018, when the president will lay down its powers and the state will pass to the parliamentary form of governance, some shocks may occur. RA MP Edmon Marukyan thinks so.

Now the state is in the transitional period and serious problems are expected.

“I think it will be at the end of 2017 and at the beginning of 2018 when the powers of the president will be over. In this transitional stage it is possible that some shocks will occur and we need to have a balanced parliament for it,” Marukyan said. 

It is necessary that the parliamentary system works, otherwise, according to Marukyan, system of government furnished only by the dictates of one-party can be established without a balanced game rules.

Edmon Marukyan, Chairman of NA Standing Committee of Human Rights and Public Affairs Elinar Vardanyan, NA RPA faction member Margarit Yesayan and Transparency International (TI) Legal Expert Heriknaz Tigranyan participated in a discussion on "Transition to the new Constitution. Problems and Prospects" at Media Center on June 4. 

There are two realities according to Marukyan: Constitution as a document and the real life where it is implemented incompletely.

“This situation has almost always occurred. It had been before the adoption of the new Constitution. Therefore, we should conform that life to the Constitution. The Constitution does not still work completely, and we do not know to what extent it will be launched. One thing is that we have a text, another thing is its practitioners: what political elite is formed to use the text,” Marukyan said.  

According to him, it is now clear that the outcome of this Constitution - the new Electoral Code, created such conditions that the ruling party is a step ahead of the others.

Elinar Vardanyan said that the Armenian society never considered the Constitution to be its own and noticed that the main reason is not enforcing the provisions of the Constitution.  

“The constitution was changed not because it was good or bad, but it was necessary to change the governance model. However, in this way the issue of the implementation of the provisions of the Constitution was not resolved. If the provisions of the Constitution were not respected before, I'm not sure that it will become a respected document for everyone after the changes,” the speaker said. 

Margarit Yesayan thinks that the problem is weak political system and young political culture. The evidence is that the overwhelming majority of the 80 political parties registered in Armenia are inactive. 

“This does not prevent from establishing new political parties and cleaning of ideologies, views will take place in the parliamentary political system. We will ensure that the parties are consolidated and have concrete ideologies. In that case no one would think of creating a party for their own pleasure and desire even if they have a lot of money and abilities,” Yesayan said.

Heriknaz Tigranyan said that the fact that the Constitution Day does not turn into a national holiday shows the break of the link between the Constitution and the society.

“People do not perceive that this document should influence the quality of their life, change in in some way,” Tigranyan said. 

According to her, the public does not perceive the importance of the transition to a parliamentary system, as well as the fact that the Constitution is changed once every 10 years. 

“Why does need for changes arise if we do not see a real crisis of governance," Tigranyan asked and added that according to the new Constitution a transition to a parliamentary system was made, for which there were no preconditions.

“We did not have a developed a stable multi-party system that would enable the parties to enter parliament," Tigranyan said, in the amended Constitution proportional parliamentary elements are distorted, and in this respect they are still of the opinion that the new constitution would not provide a classic parliamentarism.

Arshaluys Mghdesyan, editor/events coordinator at “Media Center”

To contact the author please send an email to arshaluismghdesyan@pjc.am.

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