Statements and messages of the Prime Minister of RA

Yerevan Council of Elders demonstrated political will on the way to the accomplishment of a new model of local self-government in Armenia - The speech of the Prime Minister at the oath-taking ceremony Yerevan Mayor


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Today, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan took part in the sitting of the Yerevan Council of Elders, within the framework of which the inauguration ceremony of the newly elected mayor of Yerevan Hrachya Sargsyan took place.

Nikol Pashinyan delivered remarks, where he particularly said,

"Dear Mr. Mayor,

Dear members of the Council of Elders of Yerevan,

Honorable President of the National Assembly,

Distinguished representatives of the Government and Executive Power,

Dear attendees,

First of all, I would like to congratulate Hrachya Sargsyan on his election to the high post of Mayor of Yerevan. I myself was once a candidate for Mayor of Yerevan, I have a full idea of the high honor of being the Mayor of the capital city.

I would like to wish good luck to the Mayor and Yerevan Council of Elders in implementing the programs outlined in this crucial period. I would like to congratulate also the Council of Elders of Yerevan, because I am convinced that one of the most important issues on our agenda is the accomplishment of state institutions. And with the recent events, the Yerevan Council of Elders showed a clear political will on the path to the accomplishment of the new model of local self-government in the Republic of Armenia.

Finally, let us record that today in all communities in the Republic of Armenia with a population of more than 4,000, elections in the proportional representation system are taking place, which implies a new model of community administration, which corresponds to the model of state administration. And we must state that this new model, yes, has shown its effectiveness in terms of administration of Yerevan, Gyumri, Vanadzor.

I would like to state that the program that has been implemented in Yerevan since 2018 is the pre-election program of the "My Step" bloc, which, I have to emphasize, is largely based on the "Yelk" bloc's 2017 program for the Yerevan Council of Elders elections. And the development directions that are being carried out in Yerevan today are the result of political decisions, because back in 2018, when the elections to the Council of Elders of Yerevan took place immediately after the revolution, our strongest vision was that after the elections the pre-election program, the provisions of the pre-election program, which was put forward by the "Yelq" bloc in front of the voters of Yerevan in 2017 and which received more than 20% of votes should be implemented.

I would like to note that the Government has provided significant, tangible support to the Yerevan Municipality during this period. Since 2018, the Government, through various financial instruments, has allocated about 50 billion AMD to the Municipality of Yerevan. And, by the way, I want to make a very strong statement, not because our political team had a majority in the Yerevan Council of Elders, if we count the "Yelq" bloc, a wider majority, but because we attached importance to the institutional accomplishment.

Deviating a little from the topic, I would like to draw your attention to one important fact. I think we should pay attention to the fact that in the recent local elections where the incumbent mayors participated in the elections, they mostly won. And this is not an accident at all, dear colleagues. For several years, political analysts and theorists have been saying that the Government or the political majority is acting against itself. What did they mean?

In fact, since 2018, if we include also Yerevan, we have injected about $ 350 million into local self-government bodies, created a system that obliges community leaders to stand before the voters, the citizens, the people. And we did it using two tools. Today, every citizen of the Republic of Armenia knows, firstly, that the results of the elections in the Republic of Armenia are not falsified, secondly, we sent a clear message to the local self-government bodies by introducing subsidy systems that there will be no local government program that will really contribute to the development of the community, that will be rejected by the Government. We have been, are and will be adhered to that principle. Third, by introducing a new electoral system of community council of elders in the whole territory of the republic, we have made the incumbent community leaders closer to the people institutionally, because the activity of the council of elders is, in fact, a kind of public activity, the purpose of which is to ensure the link between the citizen and the mayor. And the rupture of that link between the Council of Elders, the people, the head of the community is simply institutionally incompatible.

I consider this institutional accomplishment very important; yes, we must continue this policy of state institution building, because it is the institution building that must guarantee the further, normal development of the local self-government bodies of the Republic of Armenia. We will continue to support the communities, we will continue to support Yerevan, Yerevan Municipality, the Mayor, the Council of Elders to implement the programs we formulated together in 2017 and 2018.

Dear Mr. Mayor,

Congratulations once again. Dear members of the Council of Elders, I once again congratulate you. I would also like to thank you for the political uprightness, which is very important in the current period of accomplishing local self-government bodies and state institutions.

Thank you”.

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