On December 26, the 18th extraordinary session of Khalk Maslkakhaty (People's Council) took place at the Rukhiet Palace in connection with the sudden death of the first president of Turkmenistan, Saparmurat Niyazov. 2466 delegates coming from all provinces of Turkmenistan, branches of power and major public organizations of Turkmenistan attended the session.
Acting president of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov was elected chairman of the session by direct and open ballot.
Khalk Maslakhaty met to consider issues related to organization and holding of presidential elections in Turkmenistan, to set the date of elections and nominate candidates for the main state post. In this regard, members of Khalk Maslakhaty were required to discuss amendments to the Constitution and adopt the law "On election of the President of Turkmenistan", approve the composition of the vote-counting commission of Khalk Maslakhaty and composition of the Central Commission for Holding Elections and Referendums in Turkmenistan.
The session participants observed a minute of silence in memory of the untimely deceased leader of the nations, Saparmurat Niyazov.
In his speech, acting president of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedoov noted that Saparmurat Niyazov sacrificed all his efforts, will, energy and talent to selfless service to Fatherland. Guided by centuries old traditions of ancestors and progressive world experience of state building, Saparmurat Niyazov developed a unique model of new Turkmen statehood which proved fully effective in 15 years of independence, Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov emphasized.
The entire world community mourns together with the Turkmen people the premature death of President Saparmurat Niyazov, the speaker noted. The acting president of Turkmenistan expressed sincere gratitude to fellow countrymen as well as members of official delegations of foreign countries, international organizations and companies who participated in funerals of Saparmurat Niyazov, who sent and keep sending condolences sharing with Turkmen people the pain of irreplaceable loss.
Acting chairwoman of the Mejlis (Parliament) of Turkmenistan Akja Nurberdiyeva spoke on the issues of adopting the constitutional law "On introducing amendments and additions to the Constitution of Turkmenistan" and the law "On election of the President of Turkmenistan". According to her, amendments to the main law, in particular, concern the transmission of powers of the president of Turkmenistan to one of the deputy prime ministers of the Cabinet of Ministers, if the head of state can not perform his duties, as well as some other provisions of the Constitution of Turkmenistan. As regards the law "On election of the President of Turkmenistan", the session considered the major articles of this document aimed at further strengthening and developing democratic traditions in the Turkmen society.
The delegates of Khalk Maslakhaty unanimously approved amendments to the Constitution and the law "On election of the President of Turkmenistan".
Then, the participants of the national forum approved the composition of the vote-counting commission of Khalk Maslakhaty totaling 121 members as well as changes to the composition of the Central Election Commission.
Turning to the main point on the agenda, the election of the president of Turkmenistan, chairman of the Central Election Commission Myrat Garriyev proposed to hold the presidential election on February 11, 2007. We have to exert all efforts to ensure that the forthcoming election campaign is held at the highest level in accordance with legislature of Turkmenistan and universally recognized norms of international law, he noted.
The delegates agreed to hold the election of a new president of Turkmenistan on February 11.
Delegates from the provinces and metropolitan Ashgabat nominated two candidates for the highest state post each: Ashgabat, Akhal province, Balkan province, Dashoguz province and Lepab province. The Democratic party of Turkmenistan and other public organizations comprising the National Movement Galkynysh nominated the deputy prime minister of Turkmenistan, acting president of Turkmenistan, Supreme commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov for the post of the head of state. Proposing Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov's candidature, first secretary of the political council of the Democratic Party Onjik Musayev described him as skilled and businesslike leader who was trusted by Saparmurat Niyazov and who diligently fulfilled all the tasks of the head of state.
The delegation of Mary province also submitted the candidature of Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov for consideration by the forum participants who unanimously supported his nomination.
As a result of open ballot held by the delegates on each candidature separately, Khalk Maslakhaty decided to register six candidates for the post of the president of Turkmenistan who scored the majority of votes. They are the deputy minister of oil and gas and mineral resources of Turkmenistan, Ishanguly Nuriyev; the mayor of the town of Abadan of Ahal province, Orazmyrat Garajayev; the mayor of the town of Turkmenbashy of Balkan province, Ashirniyaz Pommanov; the first deputy governor of Dashoguz province, Amanyaz Atajykov; the governor of Garabekewul district of Lebap province, Mukhammetnazar Gurbanov; and acting president of Turkmenistan, Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov.
Having resolved that the next extraordinary session of Khalk Maslakhaty would be convened February 14 in Ashgabat to discuss the results of the national election of the president of Turkmenistan and having issued an address to the people of Turkmenistan, the 18th session of Khalk Maslakhaty completed its work.
(The article is based on TDH reports)