ASTANA — President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev’s reforms heralded the beginning of the renewal of the system of social values, revived civic engagement, and fostered citizens’ participation in the country’s fundamental transformation process, wrote State Counselor Erlan Karin on his Telegram channel on March 16.
President Tokayev presented a comprehensive reform program a year ago, resulting in an unprecedented transformation of state and public life.
It included a national referendum, the first one since 1995, where citizens approved constitutional reform to amend one-third of the country’s Constitution – eight out of nine sections and 33 out of 98 articles. He added that following the referendum, seven constitutional laws, 15 codes, and 29 laws were amended.
Karin noted the introduction of a single seven-year presidential term, strengthened powers of the Parliament and maslikhats (local representative bodies), as well as other political reforms.
“The Constitutional Court has begun its work, and the term of office of judges is longer than those of the President and members of Parliament. The procedure for registering political parties has been simplified, resulting in the registration of two new parties. As a result, a new model of the state-political system with an optimal balance between branches of power was formed,” wrote Karin.
The State Counselor highlighted the recent presidential and Senate elections, as well as the upcoming legislative elections on March 19 to elect members of the Mazhilis, the lower chamber of Parliament, and maslikhats. The upcoming vote will elect members under a new proportional-majoritarian system, signaling a final stage in a systemic reboot of key state institutions.
Karin also noted the government’s reform of the administrative-territorial structure that created three new regions last year – Abai, Zhetisu, and Ulytau – while the administrative center of the Almaty Region was relocated to the city of Konaev.
“A new model of constructive development and sustainable society is reemerging. Its key element is the National Kurultai (National Congress). Its first meeting took place in Ulytau, and the second one will take place in Turkistan,” Karin concluded.