Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov's statement at the joint meeting of Nationwide Galkynysh Movement and Democratic Party of Turkmenistan
Dear participants of the meeting,
First of all I would like to thank all of you for the trust you granted to me by electing Chairman of the Nationwide Galkynysh Movement of Turkmenistan and its vanguard - Democratic Party of Turkmenistan.
The most active members of the Democratic Party and Galkynysh Movement are attending this congress.
I am confident that as a result of joint work we will be able to accomplish the ambitious programs of state-building in Turkmenistan, the new revival epoch and grandiose transformations. Together with people we will address all vital tasks set by the XIX and XX sessions of Khalk Maslakhaty of Turkmenistan.
The last congress was held under the leadership of the first President of independent, neutral Turkmenistan Saparmurat Turkmenbashi the Great in Ashgabat, December 16-17, 2006. Since then 7 months have passed. In this period we managed to ensure the consistency in strengthening democracy, stability in our young 15 year-old state and society. We did everything to preserve civic accord, peace, law and order. We have achieved all that thanks to the fortitude and restraint, patience and consciousness of the Turkmen people that absorbed the best human qualities. In the difficult for the country days of the Great Leader's passing away the people demonstrated the tenacity and consolidation and thanks to it stood the severe test that fell to their lot. People were not panic stricken, as some expected it. On the contrary, they continued to move toward the high goals that the great Serdar devoted his life to.
It is not for the first time that I am saying it. Today I want to remind once again about it in order to revere the memory of the first President Saparmurat Turkmenbashi the Great, the founder of independent, neutral Turkmenistan, Nationwide Galkynysh Movement and Democratic Party of Turkmenistan. On February 14, on the day of my coming to office of President of Turkmenistan, I promised to my nation that I will devote all my efforts for realization of Saparmurat Turkmenbashi the Great's precepts that became the embodiment of the spiritual heritage of ancestors.
At this congress, I want to once again thank all members of the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan for putting forward my candidature for the post of President of Turkmenistan and all possible assistance and support in the election campaign. The February 11 elections have become a good school of strengthening the national democracy, sources of which are traced in the traditions of great ancestors, another manifestation of the triumph of true democratic governance. The overwhelming majority of the Turkmen people voted for the continuation of the existing policy of independent, neutral Turkmenistan, consistent implementation of reforms in the state and society.
I understand very well how important is my position. Therefore, from the first days of coming to office I declared that while fulfilling the duties of the head of state I will wholly rely on my people. I also said that as President of Turkmenistan I will safeguard interests of my people. I want to stress it once more. My main responsibility has been and remains taking care of the well-being of my people, their wealthy and dignified life.
In order to keep my promises, we will continue to supply natural gas, electric power, water and table salt to the population free of charge. Using the sewage systems will be also free of charge. As in the past, prices for oil products and wheat products, transport and communal services will be low. We will further improve our tax policy. We have passed several resolutions on this regard. All of you are aware of reforms that are implemented in the social security system. We have passed the Code on "Social Security" and from July 1 it has entered into force.
New jobs for the population are being consistently created. The National Program "Strategy of economic, political and cultural development of Turkmenistan till 2020", the Program of oil and gas industry development till 2030, the Program of transforming the agriculture of the country adopted at the XX Khalk Maslakhaty of Turkmenistan and other documents serve as our main guidelines in this direction. In all sectors of the economy, especially in the oil and gas, chemical and power engineering sectors, in textile, processing and food stuff industry, in production of mineral fertilizers, construction, road building and communications we use and develop the advanced technologies. New plants and factories, healthcare, recreational and cultural facilities are being constructed everywhere in the country. We will continue the building program further. Now we have started to reconstruct Turkmenbashi city, to create Avaza national tourist zone. Everything is being done only in the interests of our people.
I want to talk separately about the reforms in the systems of national science, education and healthcare. The first Decree and other documents I signed right after coming to office were aimed at improving work of the country's educational establishments. Works in this direction are being intensively carried out. Developing of new curricula and publication of new textbooks are being continued. In the new academic year, starting from September 1, classes in all secondary, secondary-special and high schools of the country will be conducted according to the updated curricula meeting the spirit of new reforms in the education system. As you know, at the XX Khalk Maslakhaty I signed a decree "On increasing the salaries of workers of educational system of Turkmenistan and stipends of students". I am confident this measure will become a powerful incentive in work of teachers, and will inspire them to put much more efforts in education and nurturing of the growing generation, and students will be inspired to get good education.
We have adopted a number of important resolutions on improving science in Turkmenistan and on activities of the Academy of Sciences. Now in the higher educational establishments the post-graduate courses for master's and doctor's decrees will be opened. We will reorganize the activities of the Supreme Council for Science and Technology at the President of Turkmenistan. We will have a new generation of young and talented scientists.
In this convention I want to emphasize once again that the goal of all our reforms is the intention to give our youth wonderful education, help young people get good knowledge in the chosen specialization, stimulate them to do research. We also aim to educate them so that they become true patriots of their homeland.
I don't want to take your attention on the foreign policy, on what we do in the international arena. You see that Turkmenistan does not remain aloof from resolving the biggest, global issues. We are united with the international community in this. In any issue we proceed from our status of neutral state. All of you know of the UN's decision to open in Ashgabat a Center for preventive diplomacy. We are proud of it and treat this fact as the world's recognition of the international reputation of our state.
Dear compatriots, dear friends!
We are striving to build a harmonious, inspired, humane and developed society in independent, neutral Turkmenistan. Therefore, we all have one common task - to join our efforts in transforming the economy and social life of the country. Today, every sector is in progressive movement, we are witnessing striking changes. In the short period that passed after the presidential elections we started to realize another large-scale activity - comprehensive reforms in agriculture. Currently, we work on the state program of ensuring the high level of social and living conditions of the population of villages, towns and etrap centers. God willing, this program will cover all close and remote, big and small populated areas. We will realize it in life.
I want to say it once again: if we can secure happy and wealthy life for our people, increase their material welfare it will serve as an impetus for more effective reforms in all sectors. Our hard working people deserve better life. As you know we started our village reforms from Ruhabat. The Great Serdar started implementing the complex program of improving Ruhabat etrap and showed us a lesson how the problem of village improvement should be solved. From the first days of coming to office I signed a decree on further improvement of social and cultural life of the population of the most western etrap of Balkan province, Esenguly, which is situated on the shore of the Caspian sea. We have opened a new Ruhubelent etrap in Dashoguz province. Now, in both of these etraps a lot of work is being done. The activities are under my personal control. My trips to provinces of the country have shown we were right starting implementation of big projects. These transformations coincide with requirements of the present stage of our development; they are supported by our increased capabilities and are in full conformity with the great objectives of the Golden Age of the Turkmen people.
We also have an ambitious program of providing the population with the comfortable housing. We launched a program of individual housing construction and selling of apartments for lax credits. Here, I want to remind hakims of provinces and Ashgabat city of the importance of solving the issues of housing provision, proper work of communal services, and first of all water, gas and power supply and telephone communication, Internet and other systems of modern communication. They must also take care of cleanliness and landscaping of territories and planting of trees. They must not forget that hakims of etraps and towns as well as members of local khalk maslakhaty are elected by people, that this December elections of khalk maslakhaty members of provinces and Ashgabat city will be held, and hakims in these provinces will be elected the same way. Our people is able to notice those who works well, therefore they elect those that they respect. At the same time, Turkmens are very exacting people. Now, newly elected hakims will have to be accountable both to the President and people.
I want to say a few words about the reforms in the healthcare system. During the meetings with voters and after elections I stressed a lot on the importance of solving this vitally important issue. It is close to me because of my educational background. For the people, resolving of this issue is of vital importance. Over the years of independence, striking qualitative changes in healthcare have taken place in Turkmenistan. We see the results in Ashgabat and in provinces. Implementing the state program "Saglyk" that has recently celebrated its 12th anniversary, our national medical sector has advanced in terms of provided medical services. The equipment of modern medical and diagnostic centers meets the world standards and the level of developed states. The average life expectancy has grown and in achieving this, the credit goes to the national health care system along with other conditions. We will continue reforms in the healthcare system. You probably know about the passed resolutions on construction of new medical centers and facilities in the capital and other regions, and our programs for the future. I want to reiterate that healthcare will always be a priority direction in the focus of President and one of the main tasks of the state. I think the public organizations of independent neutral Turkmenistan will wholly support me in this.
Dear participants of the joint meeting,
As for the agenda items of the congress I want to specially stress how important were the decisions adopted at the past IV congress. We adopted the program of organizational and social and political activities of the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan and public organizations in the Nationwide Galkynysh Movement of Turkmenistan on revival of our Motherland and nurturing of the new young generation of the XXI century in the spirit of sacred Rukhnama. The sacred Rukhnama says: "Spirituality is the main moral value of Turkmens in the Golden Age". These words must become a slogan of all public and political work that you will do from now on.
At the last congress we made the right and timely decision to strengthen the role of the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan in the public life of the country in the epoch of independence. As you remember, the Great Serdar told: "We will have a multi-party system. The following needs to be pointed out: we need parties that would influence the conscience of people, inspire them for the creative labor for the further prosperity of our homeland. Whatever parties are created in our country, Democratic Party of Turkmenistan as a leading party will ever more strengthen its role in the society". Decisions that we make, work that we do are in full conformity with these words by the Great Serdar.
The great independence has created and put forward the Nationwide Galkynysh Movement and Democratic Party of Turkmenistan to the advanced positions. Today, they act as inseparable part of our sacred independence. For today they are the strong leading force of social and political life in the country, a reliable support of our independent and neutral state. They play major role in the spiritual revival of the nation, patriotic education of youth, elucidation of the teaching of sacred Ruhnama and doing propaganda work. We all understand very well that our unity and cohesion are a source of the great spiritual revival of the nation. In the past, the activities of the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan acting as a uniting and guiding political organization in the Nationwide Galkynysh Movement of Turkmenistan promoted greater consolidation of the Turkmen people. I have no doubt that you will act in the same way in the future.
On the new turn of our historical development, in the epoch of new nationwide revival we will widely use the rich experience of our Democratic Party expressing national interests of the whole nation and struggling for the strengthening unity and cohesion of the people. Today, the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan consisting of almost 148.5 thousand members acts as a developed and consolidated political force with clear goals, fully ready to implement all our new programs and fulfill new tasks.
As President of Turkmenistan I stand for strong Democratic Party. Our party must be a reliable and tireless assistant in state administration, a wise advisor, active propagandist of policy developed in the interests of independent homeland. The time has shown that we were right following the course of the great Serdar and having proclaimed further development in the new epoch of national revival and great transformations. And now we have to fulfill all planned actions. Much will depend on both the people and the unity and cohesion in among members of the Nationwide Galkynysh Movement. I count on your further active participation that inspires people for new labor achievements and creation. I hope you will do the best to further raise the reputation and honor of our Motherland.
Dear friends and brothers-in-arms,
We have been more and more involving common people in state administration. As I have already said, we held elections to Gengeshliks and regional Khalk maslakhaty. This and next year will be marked with the next stage of elections. In the end of the year we will conduct elections of to khalk maslakhaty of provinces and Ashgabat city. In 2008, the elections of peoples representatives and Mejlis members will be held. We have a positive experience of organizing and holding of democratic elections in full compliance with legislation of Turkmenistan and norms of international law. We will conduct all future elections in full conformity with these norms on the broad alternative basis in conditions of openness through secret ballot. Thus, having closed the formation of the institutes of state power and governance corresponding to the principles of ancient national democracy we will successfully realize constitutional reforms started by the Great Serdar.
We will pay the most serious attention to democratic transformations in the country. I hope no one will ever criticize us in restricting democracy. For democracy is in blood of Turkmens, it is instilled with mother's milk. We are proud of it. I believe the Nationwide Galkynysh Movement of Turkmenistan comprised of all public organizations of the country and its leading force - Democratic Party of Turkmenistan will further ensure national and civic accord, unity of all layers of the society, implementation of the program of development of the Turkmen people in the XXI Golden Century.
I highly appreciate the weighty contribution that you make in strengthening of the great independence and permanent neutrality. For the happy future we need unity and cohesion, integrity and creative labor. During swearing-in ceremony I made the following address to my people: "I am confident that doing work worthy of the glory of our ancestors we will turn the brilliant pages in the history of our independent homeland. Our descendants will admire and be proud of our deeds". God willing, we all together will fulfill this honorable mission.
I wish all of you every success in implementation of great programs of the Golden Age, strengthening the unity and cohesion of the courageous, heroic and valiant Turkmen people. May the inspiration will always be with you! I wish good health to each of you, happiness and every success.
May your spirits be high!
August 4, 2007