Lukashenko confirms readiness to hold referendum on Belarusian Constitution

The president underscored that it was up to the local authorities, among other bodies of power, to organize this process

MINSK, September 20. /TASS/. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko confirmed his readiness to hold a constitutional referendum in the republic.

“There is a referendum ahead of us. We will have to hold it, to persuade the people, although we won’t get out of our way. We will simply tell the people what changes will come because of the amendment of the constitution, so that we would not be accused of clinging to the power so much that our hands went blue, as I often say, and tweak this constitution for ourselves,” Lukashenko said, appointing the heads of local administrations Monday, according to BelTA.

“We will hold the referendum as we promised,” he underscored.

The president drew officials’ attention to the importance of working with people.

“If we want to have people’s support, the support of the Belarusian people, then we must work with the people,” he said.

He underscored that it is up to the local authorities, among other bodies of power, to organize this process, adding that chairmen of district executive committees and other employees of the executive authority “will have a difficult time, of course.”

Amid the protests in Belarus that sparked in the wake of the August 9, 2020, presidential elections, Lukashenko stated the need to amend the constitution and his readiness to delegate some presidential authority to other branches of power. The Constitutional Commission, established under Lukashenko’s order, rolled out a number of proposals, including limiting each presidency to two terms. It also proposed to strip the president of his right to cancel governmental acts and to issue decrees. The proposals were forwarded to the head of state. The draft constitution is expected to be presented for a nationwide discussion in early 2022.

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