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  Wednesday, November 30, 2022
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Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said Friday that he opposes the idea of making Kazakhstan a parliamentary republic
"We had a parliamentary republic with the communist Supreme Soviet [parliament] in 1993 and 1994," he said, addressing a congress of entrepreneurs in the capital of Astana. He expressed doubt that the revival of a system where every nominated minister has to be confirmed by the legislature could benefit modern-day Kazakhstan. Nazarbayev said the nation has made significant progress in recent years due to its adherence to "strong government, rigorous laws and free society." He also said a group of authoritative Western political scientists who spent a year-and-a-half studying Kazakhstan's society and government concluded that for the nation to prosper, the present political system should remain unchanged for at least another twenty years. But he said this by no means meant stagnation and promised that if elected for a third presidential term, he would launch liberal political reform to decentralize government authority, develop local self-government and fight corruption. Nazarbayev has been ruling the country since it gained independence from Russia after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. A nationwide referendum in April 1995 extended his first 7-year presidential term to 2000 and expanded his powers, vesting him with the right to initiate constitutional amendments, appoint and dismiss the cabinet, dissolve parliament, call referenda at his discretion and appoint administrative heads of regions and cities. Kazakhstan has a bicameral legislature, including the Senate (39 seats; 7 senators are appointed by the president; other members are popularly elected) and the Majilis (77 seats; 10 out of the 77 Majilis members are elected from the winning party's lists; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms).
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