It has been quite predictable that the man who lost the devastating war, who sent 5,000 guys to death, who harmed over 10,000 people and refused to give up power, would also organise the snap elections based on his ideas and perceptions, said Armenian ex-deputy PM Armen Gevorgyan.
“However, this process has nothing in common with democratic values and practices. Such a special system for the abuse of administrative resources might be outlined in the morbid imagination of those who want to stay in power at all costs.
Below is the entire system of unlawful use of state resources by the authorities to gain an advantage in the electoral process:
1. Legislative amendment to the main rules immediately prior to the election.
The Electoral Code Amendments have not been signed by the President of the Republic of Armenia, which already confirms that the entire process is semi-legitimate.
2. Exercise of legal intimidation against political opponents:
• initiation of criminal cases or bringing new charges;
• “apprehending people” to the police and using violence;
• inscrutable “explanatory talks” in the law enforcement agencies;
• formation of special groups to “work” with the state apparatus in the security agencies;
• spying on opponents (opposition members) and wiretapping.
3. Abuse of administrative resources:
• dismissal of those who have different political views and opinions;
• forcing public officials to attend the rallies of the nominal power;
• mass engagement and exploitation of children, schoolchildren and teenagers;
• involvement of a tremendous number of police and security forces to ensure the security of the acting Prime Minister.
4. Use of state budget funds for pre-election purposes:
• provision of material and financial assistance to families in need;
• promises to provide new state subsidies;
• concluding temporary service contracts in the territorial administration bodies;
• supply of agricultural machinery and other equipment to rural communities on the eve of the elections.
5. The biased work style of the Public TV Company, i.e. explicitly servicing the pre-election interests of the acting Prime Minister.
6. During the election campaign the acting Prime Minister’s aggressive, inadequate behavior, speeches, calls for violence, political and civil vendettas, threat of “mass replacement of personnel”/mass dismissals.
Moreover, all this is happening with the tacit consent of our international partners, and each of them have their own interests in the results of this experiment on the Armenian people. Some of them want to know what to improve in the technologies to spread this exercise more widely and effectively in the world, while others think how to prevent it from suddenly reaching their countries.
It would be extremely insane to violate justice at the last step and corrupt legitimacy of elections. Armenia has a unique opportunity from June 21 to start a new page of internal solidarity and national rise. That requires everyone to return to the environment of rule of law, show political and civil sobriety, and for the law enforcement officers to remain neutral and strictly comply with their obligations under the law.”