YAP Deputy Chairman Ali Ahmadov: “Some YAP members, who ran for municipal elections out of party list, removed from party membership” - INTERVIEW

YAP Deputy Chairman Ali Ahmadov: “Some YAP members, who ran for municipal elections out of party list, removed from party membership” - <font color=red>INTERVIEW</font>
# 22 January 2010 15:12 (UTC +04:00)
Baku. Elnur Mammadli, Elbrus Seyfullayev – APA. Deputy Chairman and Executive Secretary of the New Azerbaijan Party (YAP) Ali Ahmadov gives an interview to APA

-Has YAP started preparations for the parliamentary elections in Azerbaijan this year?

-Recently, results of the municipal elections in Azerbaijan were announced and YAP won these elections, which showed YAP’s position and confirmed its public influence once again. These elections proved that the citizens support President Ilham Aliyev’s policy. 2010 will be remarkable in the political life of Azerbaijan with the parliamentary elections. The elections will be held in November. Despite that we have 10 months ahead YAP will be loyal to its traditions and start preparations soon.

-Newspapers discuss YAP candidates and sometimes publish the list of candidates. What difference will be between the YAP lists for 2005 and this year?

-This is 2010 and of course, the lists of 2005 cannot be saved in these elections too. There was great development in Azerbaijan over the past 5 years. The country passed the phase of development in both political and economic fields. On the other hand, the parliament worked intensively during these 5 years. Life is going on bringing new duties. All of these things determine the party’s strategy for nomination of the candidates in upcoming election campaign. YAP parliament corpse formed in 2005 is working usefully. We are satisfied with the activity of our parliamentarians. We will determine more successful candidates in separate electoral districts.

-How will you determine requirements?

-We will conduct opinion polls. YAP has local organizations in all regions. They provide us with information about the voters’ opinion. The results of elections show how correct is the party’s decision.

-Are there some parliamentarians elected from YAP that couldn’t justify themselves?

-Principally we are satisfied with the activity of our parliamentarian group. But there is a reality of voters’ opinion alongside with our attitude and we have to take it into consideration.

-What is your personal opinion?

-I don’t consider that we have to emphasis on separate persons and to form our ideas. We are expressing our satisfaction with the activity of whole parliamentarian group.

-There are some ideas that YAP will not nominate aged candidates. Is it true?

-YAP tactic prefers young people. It was not discovered by YAP. It is a reality of life. Today 28-30 percent of municipal members are young people. We will nominate young candidates in upcoming parliamentary elections too.

-You said measures would be taken concerning the party members who put forward their candidacy in the local elections out of YAP’s list. What measures have been taken with respect to those persons?

-Several hundreds of YAP members wanted to try their fate in the local elections and put forward their candidacy out of the party’s list. I do not consider this approach right, because any member of the party must obey the common decisions of the party. Everyone becomes member of the party voluntarily and does not stay in the party by force. The person becoming member of the party accepts the principles of the organization. Party puts forward a unique list in the elections. If a party’s member puts forward his candidacy out of the party’s list, then he separates the votes to be given for the party. It reduces the chance of the party’s candidate and in this case the representative of the rival party may be elected. It means that this person acted against the party. We have explained the principles, which are basic for all parties, to each member of our party, as a result of it, the majority of the individual candidates withdrew their candidacies. Very few persons preferred their personal interests to the party’s common interests. In some places strict measures were taken, they were reprimanded, in some places decisions were made to dismiss them from the party. All of them are just.

-Opposition parties have already started preparations for the parliamentary elections. How do you assess it?

-Parties’ participation in the elections is very important in the democratic societies. If a party refuses to participate in the elections without serious reasons, it means that this party’s activity is illogical. Existence of the party, which does not participate in the elections, is meaningless. In this respect, I regard it as positive that some of Azerbaijani opposite parties intend to participate in the parliamentary elections 2010. I think by making such statements they have learned from the YAP’s traditions. We have stated several times that one of the most important reasons of YAP’s victory in the elections is serious approach to the elections and preparations. If they have decided to use our experience, I welcome it.

-How much is YAP concerned over early and quick preparation of the opposition for the elections?

-Preparing for the elections in time is one of the important conditions of winning the elections. There is no opposition party that may cause YAP’s concern in the parliamentary elections. The reasons of YAP’s victory in the elections are party’s power, influence, the policy pursued by the chairman of the party Ilham Aliyev. In general, I want to say that the opposition’s preparation for the elections is a positive step, they have chosen the right way.

-Some say some foreign forces may interfere in the elections. What do you think about it?

- Every election is a test. YAP approaches every election this way. The people’s will determines every election. There are some facts of interference in the elections in separate countries and it causes regret. It should be regarded as interference in the internal affairs of the state. There should be favorable conditions so that the internal affairs of a country are interfered. I think Azerbaijan has the power and stability that prevents any interference in its internal affairs. Some efforts were made in the parliamentary elections in 2005, but Azerbaijan’s stability prevented it. I am not going to rule out that the foreign forces that are interested in our region want to interfere in the political processes in Azerbaijan. But Azerbaijan stability, power is the main factor preventing such interferences. President Ilham Aliyev has stated several times that Azerbaijan determines its policy itself. Azerbaijan does not need anybody’s help. As Azerbaijan meets its needs fully, it does not need anybody to have a say in the country’s policy. Therefore the possibility of interference in the parliamentary elections is little.

- There are 66 YAP deputies at the Parliament. What can you say about probability of changing this number after the elections?

- I consider the number of deputies will increase. YAP represents a little more part of Azerbaijani Parliament. Position of the ruling party strengthened in the society in 2010 compared to 2005. Position of the government has become stronger due to the President’s policy. These factors enable YAP to gain more votes in the upcoming elections. But it is not pleasant to express anything beforehand. In the sense that this prognosis may not be justified. But we will try to use the majority of our opportunities to be represented at the Parliament.

- Musavat Party Leader Isa Gambar accused some opposition parties of working to Iran, Russia and the power. How do you evaluate his accusations?

- I hope Isa Gambar knows the party leaders and its representatives well. They have already been together 15 years; know all fine points, secrets, unclear issues of each other. I want to confess Isa Gambar’s knowledge on this issue. If he makes such a statement, then he has very serious motives. Once we had said that some opposition parties functioned in line with the demands of foreign interested parties more than interests of Azerbaijan. It is natural that we didn’t want to denounce those parties expressing such ideas. We had unpleasant facts in hand and we expressed those statements quoting them. If these statements are made by an opposition representative, who has deep and detailed knowledge, I think we have to be very attentive in this issue. I want to confess that these ideas obviously reflect the realities.

- What is your attitude towards the people working to government at opposition?

- If the eye of one party will stroll here and there instead of functioning freely, then it will find an opportunity to keep in touch. But the Azerbaijani authority is not in need of a secret deal with any opposition parties.

- Isa Gambar stated that he would abandon a Musavat leadership. What is your stance on this issue?

- I don’t want to take a concrete stance on it, because I don’t want to interfere in domestic affairs of the party. But if Musavat party Leader considers it necessary to take such step, it means that conditions making him take this step have already been formed. There is such tradition in the world and it comes from the severe terms of elections. Changes happen in the leadership of a defeated party. Unfortunately there aren’t any changes in the leadership of defeated parties in Azerbaijan.

- Is YAP expected to hold a congress this year?

- According to statutes, the party’s congress is held every 4 years. Last congress was held in 2008. That’s why, there isn’t necessity to hold a congress in the near future.
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