The authorities are interested in labor migration.
About 1.5 million Belarusians have to work abroad. The Belarusian authorities can't hide the scale of the labor migration.
However, the official federation of Trade Unions has offered to control a "significant" labor migration.
What does this mean in practice? Will Belarusians not be allowed abroad? Will migrant laborers be equated with "parasites"?
Former Minister of Labor Aliaksandr Sasnou and public activist, representative of the Belarusian National Congress (BNC) in Slonim Viktar Marchyk answer questions of Charter97.org.
"Nine million people of landlady Korobochka"
It's hard to say what else the authorities can come up with, but they surely will, Aliaksandr Sasnou says.
- What did serve as an indicator of wealth of a feudal? It was the number of serfs. Do you remember landlady Korobochka ("Dead Souls" by Gogol) who did not agree at one even "dead souls": "what if they cost more?" Our Korobochka from Drazdy owns nine million souls. And she is concerned about the reduction of serfs, shortage of means to spend on Maybach and toilets made of gold. And it has made the authorities seek new ways to increase the number of souls. I'm not a good adviser in this issue.
Of course, there is a reason for such statements. Perhaps, a new approach to control movements of Belarusians is being developed. It's possible that some methods of the USSR may be practiced. But I'm convinced that the authorities will fail with the "iron curtain". In addition, the largest part of the border - the eastern one - is not controlled and people leave eastwards.
Viktar Marchyk says that money is the only thing the authorities are interested in:
- Attention to the labor migration signals about their desire to raise money on this category of Belarusians. Naturally, the authorities will control movements of people and it will bear other decree of Lukashenka. And these people will be subject to repeated taxation. Double taxation is the norm here. And the law and the decree may be adopted retrospectively, if the "tsar" wishes. The "parasite" database may be used while passing the border control. I will not be surprised if a "passport of parasite" will be once introduced.
I keep remembering words of Lukashenka - "we have no crisis here". How can there be any crisis in the slave state? We observe an intended destruction of the working class and turning people into slaves.
"Donkey ears are not enough to mantle the sun"
The persistence of the authorities in their attempts to bother essential processes is impressing, Aliaksandr Sasnou reasons:
- Developed countries will become more and more attractive for Belarusians who want to earn. Especially Poland. One look at its economy and its achievements over 24 years are indicative. That's why Poland and EU countries will be the magnet for the best which exist in the "Drazdy farmstead". And our serfs will be sliding into poverty and patching their clothes. / The one thing is bad - the entire population of Belarus will be sliding into poverty.
"Donkey ears are not enough to mantle the sun", Viktar Marchyk quotes Kandrat Krapiva.
- All efforts of the authorities to catch the wind in a net look ridiculous. People with higher education, especially the young, will leave abroad all the same. Flow of talents will remain. Are there any other variants if all positions are occupied by officials' children?
"We are the state"
Aliaksandr Sasnou believes that the state created by Lukashenka is not able to take care about its citizens.
- 24 years ago people came to power not build a European country, but to fatten their wallet. This authority will not help those Belarusians in trouble abroad. Taking care of people is the feature that our ruler misses. However, who does care about problems of Belarusian migrant laborers in Russia? There are slave owners who turn into their fellow citizens into slaves.
Viktar Marchyk says we form the state:
- Lukashenka's regime has no right to represent our people. He has proved it by disengaging himself from Belarusian workers abroad. Look at the number of people leaving for work in Russia and suffering troubles there! This power is not interested in rendering assistance to our citizens abroad. It just means additional expenses. He is abroad, let it be. The authorities just want to grab more money.
"Change the power to make money"
The situation is approaching the edge followed by a social upheaval, Vikrar Marchyk says.
- I do not know when it happens, but it's just right the corner. Unless the system changes, there will be a risk to reduce to slavery both in their own country and abroad. And the system can be changed only after the shift of power. No lightbulb moment will come to minds of the ruler and his officials. It's fiction. Only changes in the management of the country can create conditions to work decently. As they say, change the power to earn money.