АЏП, Summer 2014
Dhram Phá switches to Observer Status during Exumbran Council Meeting
(28 August) - During the second regular Council Meeting of the Exumbran Convention that was held today in our capital Ashtinok, a request made by Dhram Phá to change its membership into observer status was granted by the other member states. Last year, the Council adopted the controversial ECR.MF regulation, which links the right to receive funding from Exumbran institutions to minimum levels of freedom of the press, freedom of speech, and academic freedom that the member states must observe. Despite the fact that the regulation included a transition period for countries that were already members of the Exumbran Convention at the time that the regulation was adopted, Dhram Phá felt that the conditions that had prompted it to join the Convention had suddenly altered so much that it didn't wish to remain a full member anymore.
'I think that the Exumbran Convention is lucky that Dhram Phá still wants to do further business with it at all', Bohatiŕ Ŭććaŕa, leader of the communist party NKP. 'What the Council did last year was outrageous and proves that some countries think that member states should do their bidding when they want to be member. And I am appalled that our government didn't object to this. The Exumbran Convention turns out to be lead by capitalist dictators!' According to Ŭććaŕa, our country should leave the Exumbran Convention. 'Adzhatia is already a member of FICT as well; the NKP thinks that our country is spending too much money on minor international organisations with little political influence in the world. We propose to drop the Exumbran Convention.'
Foreign affairs minister Demitrieź Fŭĺgan (Secializdźiś) thinks on the other hand that the Council has been very generous with Dhram Phá. 'Last year, the Council felt that it was necessary to adopt the ECR.MF to make sure that the Exumbran funding is used in a proper way. In order to facilitate the transition, member states whose national regulation wasn't in line with ECR.MF were given extra time to make certain changes in order to comply to the new system. Dhram Phá still didn't think it had enough time and asked to become an observer instead; this request was granted by the Council.'
Other decisions that were made included the approval of a subsidy request made by Kpwahele & Nɣurumba to improve its tourism-related infrastructure and some changes to the way budgets are determined.
President won't run for a second term in office
(29 August) - Incumbent president Ăŕva Bekina will step down as president at the end of his current term. This was the obvious conclusion after the electoral committee announced the presidential candidates who managed to register succesfully and those who didn't; the president was not among them. In the last few weeks, there had been many speculation about the exact time on which the president would announce his candidacy for a second term, but when the registration deadline passed last week, the president hadn't commented yet on his plans for the future and many of his supporters feared indeed that he wouldn't be on the list. On the president's twitter account the short message 'Decided not to run again #presidentialelectons' appeared shortly after the electoral committee's press conference.
Many political parties spoke ill of the president's lack of communication. 'It is outrageous that a president keeps his citizens in the dark about such an important decision', Ĕrevi Śviveź leader Maðias Ŕaskeź said. 'If he had turned out to be on that list after all, he wouldn't have gotten my vote, as this demonstrates that he doesn't care about the Adzhatian people.' Ŕanije Erijeź, leader of the Secializdźiś, told the press that she wants to discuss the situation in the Dume. 'His lack of information may have encouraged people to become a candidate, or people who might have been a candidate if it would have been clear that Bekina wasn't going to run again, didn't know what to do; this is unacceptable', she said.
Although the Bloc-Ħĭnzei leadership was apparently aware of the president's intentions (he rejoined the party in February), many otherwise prominent members weren't. Former foreign minister and current governor of the Ĕnćev Valaźiś Krais Astrid Kŭćma decided to take her chance and run as an independent instead; although she faced criticism from fellow party members for doing so, internal party support for her may now very well increase.
The presidential elections will take place on 27 September, together with the election of the 27 regionally elected members of the Dume. The people can choose between six people: Feliks Ħceŕćvei (independent), a business man from Ĺośħue; former foreign minister Astrid Kŭćma (Bloc-Ħĭnzei, but runs as an independent); writer Ereh Maććok (independent, not related to former president Grigeŕ Maććok); former justice minister Kataŕine Matuś-Ħememiemei (AVŎD); former coup leader and head of state Ăŕva Ośŕoncei (independent); and the leader of the NKP (communist party) Bohatiŕ Ŭććaŕa.