‘Yeni Azerbaijan’ ahead in preliminary results of parliamentary elections
The Azerbaijani Central Electoral Commission has announced the preliminary results of the parliamentary elections held on November 1st.
The Chairman of the Central Electoral Commission of Azerbaijan, Mazahir Panahov, said that 5547 polling stations opened at 08.00 and worked until 19.00. According to preliminary information, the voter turnout was 55.7% (2,897,188 voters), which is 6% more than in the previous elections. The election has been declared valid at all the polling stations.
The Yeni Azerbaijan (New Azerbaijan) Party candidates have become leaders in 71 constituencies out of 125. According to preliminary data, the Civic Solidarity Party won in the two districts. The United Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan, the Democratic Reforms Party of Azerbaijan, the Great Establishment Party (GEP), the Party of Peoples Revival, the Social Democratic Party of Azerbaijan, the Ana Veten Party, the Azerbaijani Social Welfare Party, the Civic Unity Party and the Party of Democratic Education have one seat each in the parliament. According to preliminary data of the CEC, independent candidates won in other districts.
According to preliminary results, the first lady of Azerbaijan Mehriban Aliyeva, acting Speaker Oktay Asadov, Deputy Speakers Ziyafat Asgarov, Bahar Muradov and Valeh Aleskerov, the chairman of the Russian Community of Azerbaijan, Mikhail Zabelin, the head of the Council on State Support for NGOs under the auspices of the President, Azay Guliyev, a political scientist Rasim Musabekov, People's Artist of the USSR and Azerbaijan Zeynab Khanlarova, president of the State Oil Company (SOCAR) Rovnag Abdullayev and others kept their seats in the parliament.
A scientist of the Institute for Economics of the RAS, Alexander Karavaev, told Vestnik Kavkaza that the recent actions of the president and the government of Azerbaijan "gave hope" to the Azerbaijani voters. "The most important thing is the formation of a new economic policy to focus on the development of entrepreneurship, improving the business climate and systematic support for the non-oil sector. This policy has contributed to the confidence of voters that the updated composition of the Parliament will give a new impetus to the development of socio-economic processes in the country," the political scientist noted.
"The fact that the ruling party has the 'controlling stake' of seats in the parliament is not surprising. Azerbaijan is a presidential republic, where the decisions are made by the president, and carried out by the government, and the 'Yeni Azerbaijan' party plays a major role in the communication between the population, the urban entrepreneurial class and those in power. The elections showed that the "middle class" refers to the representatives of the party with hope. They believe that such an allocation of seats provides stability in the country," Alexander Karavaev stressed.
The expert expects that the reforms outlined by the President will directly affect the activity of the new parliament. "The dialogue between the government, business and society, as well as control over the process of demonopolization will fall on the shoulders of the new parliament," he concluded.
An expert of the Center for Central Asian and Caucasus Studies of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the RAS, Stanislav Pritchin, in his turn, drew attention to the unusual situation around the elections. "The last elections were held during full economic recovery, growing oil production and a positive pricing environment. At that time, no one had doubts that the pro-presidential party 'New Azerbaijan' would win. For almost a year we have been living in conditions of low oil prices and not the most favorable foreign policy situation in the Middle East. Despite this, the New Azerbaijan Party gained the most votes again and remains in the leading position in the political life of Azerbaijan, that is, even during a crisis, confidence in the president and his political power among the citizens of the republic remains high," Pritchin said.
According to him, the preservation of the parliament "will serve as a stabilizing element in view of the permutations in the executive branch." "In a situation when the national security minister was dismissed and corruption cases in respect of a number of high-ranking officials were initiated, the parliament will play a stabilizing role," the expert expects.