Challenges of a political party in Eastern Europe

The Bulgarian society goes through a deep economic, ecological, social and moral crisis, from which it can be taken out only by radical democratic changes. The Green party unites and consolidates the efforts of large popular strata. It organizes their civil activity for the realization of an integral program of social reforms on the basis of democracy, humanism and ecologization of social consciousness. The Party does not take as a criterion for social progress the extent of approximation towards some abstract pattern of social system, but the quality of life and the realization of the individual.

The country is faced with problems that can not be solved easily and quickly. It has a difficult time ahead of structural changes in NT establishment of market economy open to the world. The all-European integration process gives new chances and propitious possibilities of development. Bulgaria would not be able to decrease the gap isolating it from the highly developed countries and the new industrial states, if it stands beside this process. Due to this fact the Green party finds it expedient that the country joins EEC after a preparatory period of 8-10 years.

The policy of the Party is based on the integral unity of economic and ecological problems. To the former concern that the extensive economic development is degrading for the environment, adds the comprehension that this degradation deprives us of prospects for further economic development.

All possibilities of economic progress to the detriment of ecology have already been exhausted. We need a new way of development. The Green party suggests a process of changes according to which the usage of natural resources, the investments strategy, the orientation of technological development and the alterations of the administrative structures are in harmony and increase the present and future possibilities of improving the quality of life. The ecological and economic problems are determined by a great number of social and political reasons. The basic reason is the inequitable distribution of power and the broken balance of interests among the different strata of the population. Hence the necessity of extending the rights, the part and share of the individuals, the independent public organizations, the scientific community and the producers in all phases of planning, decision making and in the realization of every project on the basis of an utter information, the strengthening of decentralization and the local self-government.

In its activity the party is led by the following principles: democracy and political, economic and intellectual pluralism, social justice, respect of human personality, priority of the rights and interests of man, repudiation of violence as a method of political struggle, overt character of activity, collectivity in decision making and spirit of solidarity, cooperation with other political parties and public organizations aimed at integrating the different public interests and consolidating the society.

1. CIVIL RIGHTS AND POLITICAL STRUCTURE

(1) The reforms in the country must rest on a new Constitution based upon the Bulgarian democratic traditions, which will bring to life the idea of freedom and equality, regardless of people’s ethnic, religious, political etc. differences, which will guarantee the sovereignty of the people and socially acceptable methods of state government.

(2) We stand for democratic elections on all levels, characterized by total freedom of the nominees’ registration and nomination, without appointment and preliminary selection. The electors must be thoroughly acquainted with the convictions, the plans and programs of the different nominees. We stand for overt ad effective control when polling the voting-papers and publishing the results locally. The electorate must be guaranteed the right to recall the representatives who have lost their confidence.

(3) Indispensable condition for democracy is the decentralization of power and the realization of a genuine local self-government, completely separated from the state administration. The self-governing communities must be proprietors of their territory. They must own their property and finances, they must have the right to enter into alliances and must be protected against the illegal porno francais interference on the part of the regional and central authorities.

(4) We find it especially important to guarantee and extend the citizens’ right to form independent public organizations including political parties, whereby they will accomplish themselves in the country’s social and political life.

(5) Our purpose is to build a law-governed state in which the free development of man proves a condition for the free development of society. We deem it an utmost necessity to separate the legislative, the executive and judicial power and to create a constitutional court of law, which will keep legal proceedings under control and will take care of laws compliance wish the Constitution and to guarantee all constitutional rights with respective legal acts.

(6) Bulgarian legislation must guarantee the civil and human rights and freedom. All normative acts restricting the citizens’ rights which are guaranteed by the Constitution must be abrogated. The prerogatives of the executive power must be explicitly limited by legislative means. Legislature must conform to the last extend with Human Rights Charter and must meet all international obligations in the sphere of human rights assumed by Bulgaria. We stand for a radical reform of the criminal law and for the abolition of the death penalty, as well as for the improvement of civil law with a view to a better protection of citizens’ interests.

(7) We maintain every citizen’s right of objective and impartial court of law, independent of the political and administrative authorities as well as of the manifestations of public opinion. Every citizen has the right of lawyer’s defence from the beginning of the preliminary inquest. The organs of investigation must be subordinate to the Ministry of Justice and the security forces must be depoliticized. The imprisoned persons must be given satisfactory conditions of existence and humane treatment.

(8) The juridical and practical guarantees for the sanctity of the individual, the property, the home, the correspondence and privacy of phone conversations is most necessary. Any persecutions and restrictions of the civil rights of the citizens connected to their convictions, must be declared illegal. The persons who are victims of such persecutions must be given a real chance to assert their rights in court. Every citizen must be guaranteed the right to get acquainted with the information collected for him in all institutions and to get legal defence against any false or confidential information spread about him.

(9) The access to thorough information and the possibility of public expression of different opinions is the fundamental right of each citizen. Any secrecy of information must be well grounded and the subjects and principles of secrecy must be published. We fight for the abolition of the preliminary censorship and of the sate monopoly on the radio and television, the distribution of paper and the control over printing houses and manifold equipments. We fight for the equal rights of existence of public, cooperative and private radio and TV stations, press, scientific ad educational institutions for the research of public opinion.

(10) Nowadays the obligatory conscription represents an useless restriction of human rights and dissipation of material and manpower resources. We stand for the transition to a professional army. Until its creation the conscription duration must be shortened. We must introduce an alternative military service for those who do not wish to go in the army because of religious or other specific reasons. The civil defence system must be replaced by voluntary civil organizations who will help the population in disastrous situations.

(11) We stand for the guaranteed equal rights of accomplishment of all Bulgarian citizens in a sphere of activity chosen by them. We reject the nomenclature system, the right of a residence, the unmerited privileges and all artificial means of the creation of social disparity.

(12) We stand for restoration and preservation of the national and cultural dignity of all Bulgarian citizens and particularly for the preservation of the ethnic, cultural and linguistic individuality of the national minorities in the country.

(13) We respect the religious freedom and everyone’s right to give and obtain religious education at his choice. We recognize the role of the different religious institutions in the recovery of society and for the dissemination of human values. We shall cooperate in the establishment of a climate of mutual tolerance and respect among the different religious communities and among believers and atheists.

2. SOCIAL POLICY

(1) We stand for the reasonable and adequate social security of the employed people which will not disturb the labour motivation and the economic activity and initiative. This involves an expedient formation of all security funds and their functioning in absolute independence from the executive power and the state budget.

(2) We stand for a policy of effective and rational occupation of manpower and against the unproductive labour and the hidden unemployment, whose expenses bears the whole society. Every man has the right of equitable payment for the results of his work that will ensure the family maintenance and the reproduction of manpower. The workers have the right to form independent trade unions. They can rely on the Party’s support in their struggle for better conditions of work and payment. And the same time we reckon that the forms of this struggle must be strictly legalized.

(3) We stand for an equitable social security system which gives support to strata with low income, ensures a sufficient help to the disabled and support to the partially able-bodied people, which covers the expenses for compulsory vocational and general education, which ensures compensation in cases of closure of unprofitable enterprises and guarantees assistance when people look for a job, as well as the respective means of requalification. We stand for the constant addiction of pensions in accordance with the price-index, paid for the minimum wage of the means of subsistence.

(4) We stand for an economic and social policy corresponding to the consumers’ interests. We back up the creation of associations protecting the consumer’s rights. The consumer is fully entitled to receive an accurate information about the quality and the ingredients of foodstuffs, about the harmful substances and materials that consumer goods contain. It is necessary that authentic data concerning the price-index and the change of the standard of life be regularly published. The minimum wage must be official and well-grounded.

(5) We consider human health as a kind of ecological balance and as one of the essential elements of the quality of life. We stand for a new system of public health ensuring a qualitative and free medical aid. At the same time the establishment of a cooperative and private nursing homes must be legalized. The same reefers to infirmaries in religious and other public institutions. It is necessary that the rights of the patient should be guaranteed. The patient is not a subject of medical treatment, but a partner of equal rights and the doctor is not an official.

(6) Significant part of the expenses spend for high sportsmanship must be directed to the mass sport. The problems connected to the development of physical culture and sport must be legally regulated.

(7) We protect the interests of the family and the family values and we shall strive to set such conditions according to which the most human acts – children’s birth, upbringing and education will not turn into an unbearable burden to the parents and into an obstacle for their professional and social progress. We consider it necessary to introduce a three years paid maternity leave for upbringing a small child.

(8) Special cares must be bestowed to the large group of the lonely people, the disabled persons and the other socially vulnerable people. We not only stand for the defence of their rights, but we shall also work with them for the improvement of the quality of their life. We stand for the total abolition of the surtax collected from bachelors.

Bulgarian Green Party

The Bulgarian Green Party was established in December 1989. It was one of the first opposition organizations to be founded following the fall of the Communist regime.

The Green Party took part in the first democratic national elections in 1990 in coalition with the Union of the Democratic Forces (UDF). It won 17 seats in the Grand National Assembly (the Constitutional Assembly). The Greens were also widely represented at the municipal level, including a mayor position in Sofia. The mayor was A. Karakachanov, leader of the Green party.

After the UDF split in 1991, the Green Party did not manage to overcome the 4% threshold needed for Parliamentary representation in the elections of October 1991. The UDF split triggered a split in the Green Party as well, and part of the party remained in the coalition under another name (Conservative Ecological Party). Still, the Green Party kept its strong presence in local authorities in a number of big cities (e.g. In Sofia, the Greens got 8% of the seats in the Municipal Council).

In 1994, the Greens took part in the parliamentary elections within a new coalition (The Democratic Alternative for the Republic) and received 3.81% of the votes (only 0.19% off the threshold to enter Parliament!). In the municipal elections in October 1995, the Green Party won 37 seats in different towns and appointed 5 village mayors.

In the 1997 early national elections, the Green Party took part in the newly established coalition, Alliance for National Salvation, alongside the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (the Turkish party), the Liberal Union “New Choice”, the Bulgarian Agrarian National Union “Nikola Petkov” and the Party of the Democratic Centre. The party won two seats in Parliament. At present, the Party does not take part in coalitions .

Successful for the BGP were the municipal elections in October 1999. There the BGP participated solely without being in coalition. Except many counsellors and several village mayors, the party won and 2 positions for municipality mayors. All this made the BGP one of the 10th best presented parties in the elections

The elections in July 2001 were a deserved penalty for all the political classis of Bulgaria. They were gained from the National movement Simeon II, headed by the Bulgarian ex-king. The two big parties lost up to two thirds of their electorate but the loss for the smaller parties was even greater. The Green party, in coalition with the famous Political Club “Ecoglasnost” and supported from many other formations, received its worst results ever.

Current Political Situation

The political situation in the country is totally unpredictable. The winners from the national movement Simeon II came with left orientated promises for accelerated improvement of the economical situation of the voters. However, only months after the elections, the taxes, the prices of goods and energy sources increased not only with percents but with times! Meanwhile, there is no any visible sign for the people that we will overwhelm the recession. The public xnxx dissatisfaction is getting higher and higher each passing day.

Political Goals

In this situation, the major political goals of the Green Party are the following:

1. Organizational and political recreation from the electoral loss which mentally influenced a part of its activists

2. Reconsideration of its general political ideas and introducing them to its voters in a more attractive way

3. Working out its tactics concerning its future partners according to the new economical and social ambiance in the country

Green party policy principles

Our policy aims is based on three principles:

Ecological
– means basing on the partnership between man and nature. We are for the economic system aimed at needs of contemporary people and future generations, for preserving nature, man’s cultural heritage, for the economy of natural resources. When making economic decisions, both social and ecological aspects must be taken into consideration.

Democratic
– means looking for formulas of living together and at the same time preserving reciprocal identity and autonomy. Both the majority and the miniority should obey the principles of tolerance, freedom and nonviolence, observance of the outlook, religion, ethnic, cultural and many other miniorities, which follows from the ecological postulate of diversity.

Peaceful
– means looking for the world which gives people a feeling of security since niether a complex police apparatus nor a large army that is supposed to deter our potential enemies can ensure that. We should eliminate material and political possibilities and habits of solving conflicts by means of military clashes. Therefore, we should aim at eradicating models of both direct and structural violence, demilitarisations of our social, economic and political life, making educational systems and the media free from glorification of violence and hostility towards other people and nations. We shall call on every man not to act upon impulses or aggressions and to reject the stereotypes of an enemy. At the same time, as a party we declare that we shall observe the principles of non-violence consistently. However, we are for a professional army which would meet the terms and conditions of the partnership of the defensive pact and a competent state police that would ensure security of the citizens and public order