Opinion: Amendments to Belarus’ Constitution should meet the society's needs

Amendments to the Constitution should meet the needs of the society, Chairman of the Council of the Republic's Standing Commission on Legislation and State Construction Sergei Sivets told BelTA as he took part in the discussion “Constitutional reform and party-building” in Minsk on 19 October.

Minsk has already hosted three such discussions. Their agenda included such matters as the advisability of death penalty abolition, addition to the legislation the option of using detention only on the basis of a court decision, and introduction of a post of a human rights officer.

“The constitutional reform is a means to amend our social contract. This document formulates the concepts of how we are going to live and interact with each other and outlines the structure of the power system and the jurisdiction of the government agencies. These are complex and major issues that should be considered carefully. Such discussions help look into this topic and come to an agreement regarding the solution and introduction of these issues to the legislation,” Sergei Sivets said.

The discussions also touch upon problems that bother Belarusians, he stressed. This means that it is necessary to discuss these problems in detail and put forward proposals that would meet the needs of the Belarusian society.

“If people believe we should make adjustments to one or another social institute, we should look into this matter together with experts and come up with some meaningful and evolutionary reforms. There is no other way. We should not regress and lose what we have achieved,” he noted.

The final discussions will take stock of all the previous ones, compile specialists’ recommendations that will be submitted to discussion at a higher level – at the All-Belarus People’s Congress.

Taking part in the third discussion were members of the House of Representatives and the Council of the Republic of the National Assembly of Belarus, and the Minsk City Council of Deputies as well as representatives of public associations and higher education institutions.