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Yerevan Is A State Within A State - Oskanian

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  • Yerevan Is A State Within A State - Oskanian


    14:21 ~U 29.03.13

    Ahead of the Yerevan municipality elections, former Foreign Minister
    Vartan Oskanian has addressed the problems in the capital city,
    describing Yerevan as a small state within a larger country.

    The politician, who tops the proportional representation list of
    Prosperous Armenia (of which he became a member before the 2012
    parliamentary electitons), says on his Facebook profile that the
    party is doing all its best to succeed in the upcoming polls.

    "This election is strictly important. In formal terms, yes, it is
    a municipal election, but as a matter of fact, it is of a state
    [significance] given Yerevan's weight across the republic. With its
    potential and capacities, Yerevan is a state within a state. I would
    like our society too, to treat this election with maximum seriousness,
    considering its significance on both political and municipal levels,"
    reads Oskanian's post.

    Elaborating on the political aspects of the process, the former
    minister says further that the situation in Yerevan is almost the
    same as in the country in general.

    "There are many unresolved problems, gaps, abuses, non-transparent
    deals and procedures which have their essential negative impact
    on the residents of Yerevan," he says, attributing the existing
    difficulties to what he describes as a kind of provincial approach
    to the capital city.

    "That's obvious everywhere - at public events, in the construction
    quality and the city decorations. We must change our philosophical
    approach to Yerevan and treat the city as the capital of not only
    Armenia but also the Armenians worldwide, and as a favorite place for
    foreign visitors. With such a philosophy, we would have essentially
    contributed to changing the city's appearance and quality, as well as
    resolving the most elementary everyday problems of the population,"
    Oskanian continues.

    He then singles out four basic areas where he sees problems.

    "The first are the questions relating to the Yerevan residents'
    everyday life - water supply, waste disposal, transportation,
    education, healthcare, opportunities for individuals with
    Disabilities. Often, there's not only no progress, but also
    deterioration. The question, however, is that all problems are possible
    to solve in case of a proper and effective governance.

    The second is the city's architectural appearance. We definitely have a
    regress here. Illegal development activities, tasteless and dangerous
    building roof extensions, architectural constructions incompatible
    with the national [culture], etc. The mayor should have a primary task
    to stop the capital city's distortion, and later think seriously of
    re-establishing what we have lost over the course of years.

    The third [problem] are the red tapes at the City Hall and the
    regional administrations.

    The citizens' contacts with municipal authorities should be maximum
    facilitated and made transparent.

    And finally, it is necessary to change the business environment in
    Yerevan, creating equal opportunities for all businesses to enable
    their participation and victory in the bids announced by the City
    Hall. [It is also important] to increase the financial opportunities
    and set a task to make Yerevan fully self-satisfied in financial
    terms," says Oskanian, encouraging the Yerevan residents to actively
    take part in the upcoming polls to help change the situation in
    the country.

    From: A. Papazian