23 April 2019, Tuesday, 8:00
For our and your freedom!

Stanislau Shushkevich: Resignation Of Lukashenka To Become The First Step Towards Changes

Stanislau Shushkevich

Belarus will be democratic and free.

Belarusians keep voting against Lukashenka's policy line. Our compatriots are increasingly leaving for work in Poland.

Only in the first quarter of 2018 Polish employees hired 33 thousand Belarusians. This is 37% more than in the first six months of 2017.

Why do Belarusians decide to leave their homeland? Another interesting figure can be the answer. Belstat says more than a half million people live beyond the poverty line. The figure is shocking. Even official statistics states that so many Belarusians suffer deep troubles. What if we look at the real size of the problem?

First head of independent Belarus Stanislau Shushkevich comments on the crisis of the Belarusian economy in the interview to Charter97.org.

- Of course, it's regretting that poverty still exists in the 21 century. But I'm glad to see that the Belarusians find strength and opportunities to earn money. I'd like to see positive sides in the current situation. We do not realize that Belarusians stay afloat being under such conditions. This is the unique feature of our people.

Many our compatriots leave abroad having a chance to earn money there. Our people are disciplined, hard-working, capable of doing things other people cannot. That's the reason why Belarusians are valued abroad. Unfortunately, at the moment talents of our people are more in demand abroad than in the home country. I know many people who leave abroad as soon as they pass Ph.D. defense. Many people go to Poland.

I hope that this disguisting political regime will be removed and Belarusians will build a new country. And people who come back home will help.

- Lukashenka has recently stated that the economy is his greatest nightmare. Is there any reason for it?

- There are enough of them. You know, we keep listening to promises of the person who has not even a distant idea of the economy.

Things working in manual mode could operate on an automatic basis. But it requires changes in the law and policy line. And measures accepted by Lukashenka are idle.

The retention of power in the country is the root of the problem. That's it. All methods are welcomed here. For example, shuffles in the government.

Those recent changes in the government will bring no positive changes in the country's life. But this is far cry from his understanding, after all, he is ignorant person. Especially in the economic sphere.

- What has forced the dictator to change the government?

- I'd like to refrain from Odessa anecdote telling what should be changed in a brothel when things go wrong there. I'd like you to pay attention to the statement made by Lukashenka. "For neglecting orders". It's not a reason. After all, orders can be reasonable and unreasonable. If he had said that he fired them for neglecting his stupid orders, it would have been true.

Believe me, nothing will change until Lukashenka is in power. He does not care about country's interests. He does with the government whatever he likes.

I will cite a simple example: Lukashenka has ordered to curb inflation at the level of 1-2%. He has no idea that the inflation cannot be controlled with his wishes, but depends on the economy.

Russia holds Lukashenka in its financial trap. We have an extremely large foreign debt. As soon as political system changes in Belarus, we will have to follow Poland in footsteps. There is no other way. Shock comes first followed by the therapy. It's inevitable, it will be hard, but this is the right way. But now we observe sticking plaster solutions. No matter who runs the government, he will serve interests of Lukashenka and ignore economic laws.

- On August 25 we celebrated the 25 anniversary of Belarus' independence. How did your government imagine the future of our country?

- We saw it strong and democratic with good relations with neighbors. But Lukashenka destroyed the Constitution. And the only chance to get things back on the rails is to hold free elections and referendum. Resignation of Lukashenka should become the first step towards changes.