Senate Elections Fill One Third of Seats in Parliament’s Upper House
Aug 19. MFA
Kazakhstan’s 2011 Senate elections were held today on August 19 with 16 of the 47 seats in the upper house of Parliament being contested. Preliminary figures indicate that the overall turnout of voters reached 96.6% (the Kazakh Senate is elected by deputies of maslikhats – local councils). In the election race 39 registered deputy nominees ran for a seat in Senate.
Following the elections Chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC) Kuandyk Turgankulov briefed on the first results of the electors’ voting.
“According to current data of election commissions of the regions and cities of Almaty and Astana, of 3,283 Maslikhat Deputies, included in the list of voters, 96.6% parliamentary electors took part in the voting process”, Turgankulov says. He also noted that the elections in all regions are declared valid.
Later this day “Nur Otan” Party’s (the country’s dominant party) press release announced: “All the 16 Deputies that won a seat in Parliament, are the members of “Nur Otan” Party”.
In the same press release the first Deputy Chairman of “Nur Otan”, Party Nurlan Nigmatullin added that the absolute majority of the candidates nominated by their party once again won a landslide victory.
The CEC member Tatyana Okhlopkova reported at the briefing that no law violations occurred during the election process.
“The election commissions have not recorded any complaints or appeals from observers and other participants of the Senate elections”, she says.
The monitoring of the process of voting and counting carried out by 371 registered observers, 33 authorised representatives of the deputy candidates, 52 observers from foreign states and international organizations, 29 from political parties, 37 from NGOs, and 220 representatives were of local and foreign media.
The final elections outcome will be announced next week.
“The electoral commissions of regions and the cities of Almaty and Astana are due to introduce the Protocols on or prior to August 20. According to electoral legislation the CEC is obliged to reveal the final election results based on the Protocols on August 25 and release a statement in the mass media not later than August 28”, Turgankulov added.
In accordance with the Constitution of Kazakhstan senators are elected on an alternative basis (at least two candidates for a parliamentary mandate). The majority of candidates represented “Nur Otan” Party, the ruling party, with 25 candidates, two candidates from the parties “Ak Zhol” and “Aul” (Village) respectively, 8 independent candidates and other 4 ones did not indicate their party affiliation.
The upper house of Parliament has 47 seats, of these 15 are appointed by President and 32 are elected by parliamentary electors – members of maslikhats (local councils) from the 16 regions of the country (14 regional centres, and cities of Almaty and Astana).
Senators are elected for a period of six years. Every three years a part of senators are elected (16 Deputies). Each MP must be at least 30 years old and should be a citizen of Kazakhstan. The last senate elections were held in 2008.