Why Belarusians ignored recent election to Coordinating Council

Elections to the Coordination Council 

Elections to the Coordination Council  / pixabay

The elections to the Coordinating Council, a significant event in Belarusian politics, saw a participation of just over 6.7 thousand people. Some candidates, in an attempt to explain the low turnout, have voiced their dissatisfaction with the media, citing a lack of attention given to the event.

The candidates, who have made significant sacrifices for the betterment of Belarusian politics, understandably feel offended. They have been instrumental in providing the Belarusians with a glimpse of what public politics can achieve. However, shifting the blame solely on the media is not a constructive stance, particularly for public politicians.

Euroradio discussed the results of the CC elections with media experts Iryna Sidorskaya and Pauliuk Bykouski and political analyst Artsiom Shraibman. Could the participants in the elections have chosen a different strategy so that last night did not end in frustration? And what do the final results tell us about the democratic movement?


Iryna Sidorskaya: People don't understand not only what the CC is but also what the parliament is and why it is necessary

I see several reasons for the low turnout, and the first one is the risk. Not only those who live in Belarus but also those who have moved abroad are worried about their safety: their own safety, the safety of their relatives, and their property. And that is why they refuse to participate. People living in Belarus are even more worried.

The second reason is that many people do not understand not only what the Coordinating Council is but also what a parliament is in general. The problem is not with the Council but with the fact that the Belarusian parliament has not been fulfilling its functions for many years. That is, people don't really understand what the separation of powers is in general."

They say there is Tsikhanouskaya and the United Transitional Cabinet—and why do we need something else? I think the lack of interest in these elections comes from a lack of understanding of democracy and what the parliament can do in general.

It seems that this knowledge is fundamental, but in our country, this "fundamental" has not worked for many years. In Belarus, the parliament exists to approve Lukashenka's laws. Perhaps people think that the CC is necessary to support Tsikhanouskaya's decisions. However, the platform where the culture of discussion is formed does not appear by itself. People have to practice to learn it.

The candidates themselves could have been more proactive in creating newsworthy events in the lead-up to the election. The media, a powerful tool in shaping public perception, could have been utilized more effectively. The same principles that apply to commercial marketing and advertising are equally applicable to political marketing.

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