Mikalay Kazlou: Today boycott is the only way to struggle
13:36, — Politics
Among those who have registered as a “deputy” candidate is lieutenant colonel, member of the United Civil Party (UCP) Mikalay Kazlou.
Mikalay Kazlou is the one who two years ago told about the scandalous falsification of the results of the pre-term election to the “chamber of representatives” in September 2008.
Mikalay Kazlou saw the election commission members throw bulletins into a sealed urn after the polling station was closed. The lieutenant colonel informed his management about the breach, demanded an investigation, but instead had to leave the security services.
- For me, the decision of the district commission of the Kolasauski voting district came as a surprise. I didn’t expect a single UCP speaker to be registered. Everyone knew that our party supports the boycott of the “election” and that all registered candidates will leave the race in the last moment. We said openly that we’ll call for boycott of the “election” during the election campaign, - Mikalay said.
- Maybe you will change your decision, and try to fight for the “deputy” post?
- No, I won’t. It wouldn’t be fair to my colleagues in the party, and first of all to the political prisoners. Moreover, it would be meaningless. I know from my own experience that nobody actually counts the votes.
- You are a young attractive man, former employee of the criminal investigation department. I think that you still have a chance to win…
- Maybe I do. But I won’t use it… The UCP speakers are united in the decision to boycott the ”election”. This is a clear position that I fully share.
- The next stage is the election campaign. What will the election campaign of candidate Kazlou look like?
- The most important thing is to explain to the people that we should unite our efforts to fight for our constitutional rights, as well as for the right to elect that we have basically lost to the outrageous falsifications of the recent years. I base my statement not on theoretical assumptions but on my personal experience. I saw myself how the “election” is falsified, and I did my best to fight it. I failed. But it became clear to me that the entire state machine – not just someone at the polling station- is involves in the falsifications.
In the current election campaign, boycott is the only effective way to struggle. Only by refusing to participate in the election theater that the powers are trying to impose on us, we will show each other and the whole world that we are not a population, but a nation. This way we will show our solidarity with the political prisoners who are still behind the bars only for having been active advocates of our rights.
- Have you decided on the layout of your meetings with voters?
- To be honest, I haven’t thought about that. In the beginning, the most important thing for me was to get registered as a candidate, to collect signatures etc. As for the election campaign, it ought to be effective. We’ll see if we’ll meet with voters, or if we’ll only focus on media announcements. By the way, we already know the time when the announcements will be broadcast. You can hear me on Radio Stalitsa on 30 August at 17:40, on TV - 7 September at prime-time, 19:05.
”If you cannot resist the lawlessness openly – sabotage it”
Lieutenant-colonel Mikalay Kazlou gives a couple of recommendations to employees of security institutions on how to act during the election campaign:
- You should act strictly in compliance with the law. Remember that all Belarusian citizens, including yourselves, have rights guaranteed by the Constitution, and your duty is to protect these rights, not to fulfill illegal, criminal orders. If you cannot resist the lawlessness openly – sabotage it. Very often you have to do the dirty work leaving those who are responsible in the shadows. Let them do it themselves. If you get an order to write an obviously falsified paper, protocol – don’t do that. If you can’t refuse, you can right the paper on behalf of the one who gave the order, let them sign the paper themselves. And you will see incredible changes. While guarding the voting urns, remember that the commission chairperson is not your manager and cannot give you orders and direct you, no matter what they’ll tell you during the drill. Your task is to prevent crime, and the falsification of the “election” is a crime. The voting urn should always be located so that you can see it; let the security department and patrol services solve all other problems.
Don’t be afraid to ignore the pre-term ”election”. If you are ordered to vote ahead of time, which you will be for sure, just ignore the order, it is illegal. Instead, do something pleasant – anyway, nobody can check what you’ve been doing, no matter what they tell you.
And also I would like to wish each of you strength to remain good people, and to preserve self-respect and human dignity.