Most of Uzbekistan‘s voters voted in favour of the country’s President Shavkat Mirziyoyev’s idea of rewriting the constitution. The decision in an election organised on Sunday promised the former Soviet republic’s citizens greater liberties and suggested the possibility of the president serving a third term beyond the present two-term restriction.
According to the preliminary figures released by the Election Commission on Monday, 90.21% of voters backed the amendments, 9.35% voted against them, and 84.54% of people showed up.
According to the “nation’s referendum law,” a vote must be cast by at least 50% of eligible voters for a referendum to be regarded as legitimate. As many people turned out to vote across the nation to “choose their future” at 1 p.m. on Sunday, the Election Commission ruled that the referendum was legitimate.
The head of the polling place, Norboyev Uktam, claimed that every effort had been made to ensure that the voting process was open and free.
In order to secure a free and fair vote on the election’s voting day, several state agencies held back-to-back meetings at the “Election Commission press office” in Tashkent.
However, the outcomes were as anticipated, given that there was no opposition to the president’s proposals. President Mirziyoyev’s Uzbekistan Liberal Democratic Party is one of the country’s five officially recognised political parties. They were all pro-reform. In a statement released in March, a group of supporters of free speech in the media noted that the government was exerting increased pressure on criticism in traditional and social media.
In a briefing on Monday in Tashkent, observers from the “Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE)” stated that the voting was not truly accurate.
According to President Mirziyoyev, the new Constitution emphasises the importance of human rights, liberties, equality between men and women, growth in the economy, and wealth. With a two-term maximum, the new charter would also increase the presidential tenure to seven years.
Additionally, the new Constitution pledges increased media freedoms. Uzbekistan kept up the “Soviet-era censorship under Karimov,” but Mr. Mirziyoyev has loosened those restrictions. However, the media is still cautious to not overstep the line and enrage the authorities.