Local authorities deny TARF’s accusations as baseless

20/09/2013 13:48
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DUSHANBE, September 20, 2013 Asia-Plus – Local authorities deny accusations by representatives of the Tajik Association of Reformist Forces (TARF) that they allegedly put obstacles in way of the TARF as unfounded.

The authorities of Tursunzoda (district subordinate to the center) and Dushanbe’s Shohmansour district say allegations by representatives of the TARF that the local authorities have prevented them from collecting signatures to support their candidate are absolutely baseless.

According to them, they did not demand any letter from the TARF representatives for stamping their signature collection bulletins.

The local authorities say that some representatives of the TARF just did not observe the common procedural norms and requirements.  

“The head of the Islamic Revival Party (IRP)’s organization for Dushanbe’s Shohmansour district, Habibkhon Saidzoda, has submitted forms to the district administration, but they were filled wrong.  No name of the candidate and no name of the representative of the initiative group collecting signatures were stated in them, and therefore, the IRP representatives were asked to fill the forms right and submit them for confirmation,” a letter released by the Shohmansour district administration says.

According to the letter, the IRP representatives agreed and promised to submit the forms to the district administration Friday morning.

Tuichi Khanjarov, an official with the Tursunzoda mayor’s office, has also told Asia-Plus that they have not prevented the TARF representatives from collecting signatures.  According to him, some representatives of the TARF did not observe requirements of Point 2 of the Central Commission for Elections and Referenda (CCER) Resolution of August 31, 2013.

We will recall that Abduqayum Qayumzod, a spokesman for the TARF that supports lawyer human rights activist Oynihol Bobonazarova as its presidential candidate, said on September 19 that local authorities in the districts of Khuroson, Shahritous and Bokhtar in Khatlon province as well as Tursunzoda (district subordinate to the center) and Dushanbe’s Shohamnsour district demand that Bobonazarova’s campaign staff bring “a certain letter” for stamping the signature collection bulletins.  According to him, the local authorities do not say what for they need that letter and from whom this letter must be.

“We have received appropriate bulletins from the CCER for collecting 210,000 signatures to support our candidate,” said Qayumzod.  “But we need permissive seal from local authorities for collection of signatures.  And they now demand a certain letter.”

A coalition of Tajik opposition groups has nominated Oynihol Bobonazarova to be their candidate for president in elections scheduled for November 6.   The TARF made the announcement on September 9.  Bobonazarova's candidacy was officially recognized by the association on September 10.

Bobonazarova's program reportedly includes constitutional reforms, namely shortening the presidential term and limiting terms in office to a maximum of two.  Her platform also targets the transfer of some presidential powers to the legislative and executive branches.

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