Exit polls: Mirziyoyev victorious in Presidential election

Exit polls: Mirziyoyev victorious in Presidential election
Exit polls: Mirziyoyev victorious in Presidential election

Onion polls put him ahead of his rivals; the list of voters included more than 19.5 million citizens, according to the Central Election Commission of Uzbekistan

Ansar M Bhatti

In Tashkent

TASHKENT, UZBEKISTAN: The incumbent President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev is set to be elected as the President of Uzbekistan as the opinion polls, till filing of this report on Sunday night, had put him ahead of his three rival candidates. President Mirziyoyev after his election is to spur the reform process approved by the people of Uzbekistan in the recently held referendum.

The list of voters includes more than 19.5 million citizens, according to the Central Election Commission of Uzbekistan. 10,784 polling stations opened across the country. The voting process began at 8:00 am and ended at 8:00 pm local time. The final results shall be announced within 10 days.

Uzbekistan held a national referendum a couple of months ago in which a new set of reforms was approved by the people of Uzbekistan. After the referendum the incumbent President decided to seek a fresh mandate from people therefore he called early Presidential elections. The last presidential election was held in October 2021.

The president wants to implement the new reforms by taking people of Uzbekistan on board that is why he decided to seek a fresh mandate so that he could purse the reform process vigorously.

A large number of foreign observers, journalist, members of the civil society have been invited to monitor the presidential election. A sizeable group comprising prominent personalities is also in Tashkent to monitor the elections.

Voting across the landlocked country of around 36 million people began at 8:00 am local time which continued uninterrupted till 8 pm. In some areas voting concluded even before time. The Uzbek government had made elaborate arrangements for the Uzbek Diaspora living in various countries. The Uzbek missions in various countries were turned into the polling station and the process was completed well before the holding of the Presidential election on July 9, 2023.

Under the rule of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, Uzbekistan has strengthened traditional relations with Beijing and Moscow. Both Pakistan and Uzbekistan also enjoy excellent relations. The recent visit of the Uzbek President to Pakistan had further strengthened this relationship.

Pakistan values its relations with Uzbekistan, rooted in religious affinity, common values, geo-strategic significance, potential for mutually beneficial and enhanced economic and defence cooperation. On several occasions leaderships of both countries have reiterated the desire to further enhance bilateral relations including efforts for peace and security in the region.

It may be mentioned here that a high powered Pakistan delegation comprising parliamentarians and media people also witnessed the electoral process. Among them included Pakistani Senators Faisal Saleem Rehman, Sitara Ayaz, Editor Daily Islamabad POST/DNA and Centreline magazine Ansar Mahmood Bhatti and others.

After the referendum while talking to members of the Parliament the President had said that It’s easy to say, but we have to work hard to put the reforms into practice. For these purposes, allocating an additional 30-40 trillion UZS from the State budget annually is necessary. Due to this, every year, we will have to build hundreds of new kindergartens, schools, and hospitals.

‘As a priority task, we will also use new opportunities to raise youth policy, development of education and upbringing, science, culture, and sports to a new level. We will regularly increase wages, pensions, allowances, and stipends. We will further expand the range of social services for our veterans, lonely elderly people, people with disabilities, and citizens in need of special attention and care”, the President said.

In the renewed Constitution, Uzbekistan is defined as a state of law. The number of norms on human rights guarantees has also increased thrice, he said.