Opposition’s Boycotting of Presidential Elections Hardly to be Efficient: Experts

Politics Materials 20 September 2008 12:01 (UTC +04:00)
Opposition’s Boycotting of Presidential Elections Hardly to be Efficient: Experts

Azerbaijan, Baku, 20 September / Trend corr. V.Zhavoronkova, E.Tariverdiyeva / Boycott of upcoming presidential elections in Azerbaijan some opposition parties Azerbaijan will not be efficient, though the boycotting opposition believe it to be, experts assure.

Some Azerbaijani opposition's decision to boycott the elections in an effort to reduce efficiency of the elections, will not influence on their results, Igbal Agazade, an Azerbaijani presidential candidate and the chairman of the Umid (Hope) Party, who does not participate in boycott, told Trend .

Five parties are boycotted the elections. The Popular Front Party, the Liberal Party, the Citizen and Development Party, which are included in Azadlig bloc, as well as the Musavat Party and the Public Forum 'For Azerbaijan' signed a joint statement on recognition of the presidential elections to be held on 15 October as illegal.

Parties, which decided to boycott the elections, made such a decision, because the government did not examine requests of opposition, such as free expression of will at pages of magazines, press and providing entry to pages of the electronic media, Ali Aliyev, the chairman of the Citizen and Development Party, said.

Opposition's boycotting the elections is efficient in countries, where obligatory minimum number of voters, who should participate in the elections, is fixed, MP Alizade, the chairman of the opposition Umid Party believes. At present there is not such a point in the Azerbaijani Elections Code.

It mostly depends on internal conditions and on the extent to which the ruling elites feel themselves to be in an impossible situation or not, Bert A. Rockman, US expert on elections, said.

"Ultimately, that's what resulted in liberalization in South Korea and in Taiwan and, to a lesser degree, in Singapore," Rockman, Professor of political sciences at the University of Padua (the United States), told Trend .

Number of people, who will join the elections, is not so important, Alizade said. This factor does not make questionable whether the elections are democratic, he said.

"When boycotting political parties represent major demographic sections of the country (or a significant ethnic minority), such boycotts can be effective, Arnold Shober, US political scientist believes. These boycotts carry the implicit threat of civil unrest, and they may prompt concessions from the ruling government."

When leaders have no alternatives, no more buttons to push, they will seek a best deal. That's when boycotts might be successful, Rockman said.

However, opposition decisively believes their action is correct.

"At present opposition has chosen the best version amongst the worst versions, which they have had," Aliyev, the chairman of the Citizen and Development Party and co-founder of the opposition Azadlig bloc, told Trend .

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