Parliamentary Support and Public Engagement
The 'Parliamentary Support and Public Engagement' project works to provide support in strengthening information and communication in parliament, and in enhancing the institutional base of the informational and analytical activities of both Chambers of the Oliy Majlis of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
In 2005, after Uzbekistan’s first national referendum, the ‘Oliy Majlis’ bicameral parliament was introduced with a Senate (upper Chamber) and a Legislative (lower) Chamber. In 2008 the number of deputies in the Legislative Chamber increased from 120 to 150, and the requirement that candidates may be nominated only from political parties was consolidated.
Nevertheless, the task of strengthening parliamentary institutions remains a pressing issue. During consultations with the Oliy Majlis and other key stakeholders, it was noted that there was a need for the strengthening of the professional capacity of the bicameral parliament, for the introduction of the best practices in organising the work of the bicameral parliament, for the improvement of the legislative process, and for streamlining the work practices of the committees. Also identified were the needs to improve the effectiveness of parliamentary processes and procedures, and to establish better collaboration between the upper and lower chambers and their constituencies, civil society and the media.
The ‘Parliamentary Support and Public Engagement’ project works to strengthen and further enhance the capacities of the Parliament, as well as the secretariats of both chambers of the Oliy Majlis, while it works to improve the oversight and analytical functions of both chambers of parliament. It also works to strengthen the representative function of parliament by enhancing relationships between deputies and their electorates, and by improving both the efficiency of the Secretariats of both chambers and the informational and technical support provided for the organisation of parliamentary activities.
Plans for the Future
- Train members of Parliament on law-making processes, organise consultations and provide technical expertise, for instance on gender issues and environmental-related legislation, produce manuals covering legislation process in Uzbekistan, and establish an analytical and research centre;
- Train parliamentarians to address any knowledge deficit with regards to their oversight role and responsibilities, work with multi-party committees to determine how they can inquire about and investigate the implementation of government policies, and produce manuals regarding budgeting and financial oversight and oversight functions;
- Develop a communication strategy with electorates for both houses of Parliament, and prepare a database covering civil society organisations that have specific expertise and research capacities;
- Draft manuals covering administrative procedures, train Secretariats on law drafting and planning, develop recommendations for bill status systems, and develop an IT implementation strategy for both houses of Parliament.