Last day in the vote in Russia for the referendum on the constitution called for by Putin

The outcome of the referendum to validate the constitutional reforms proposed by Vladimir Putin, including his stay in power, will be known Wednesday night. The Russians are still asked to vote on the last day of a time-based survey because of the precautions in connection with Covid-19. The opposition condemns fraud and pressure on voters.

Vladimir Putin in power until 2036? Russia is in the process of adopting a constitutional reform that will allow the Russian president to remain in the Kremlin until the year 84. The Russians know in a few hours whether the reform initiated by Vladimir Putin is adopted.

The referendum, which should validate this project, began on June 25 and ends on Wednesday 1your July. The first results will be known shortly after. 18 GMT. According to critics of the Russian head of state, this election aims to defend his nitrogen hold against Russia after 20 years of power.

The vote, scheduled for April, was postponed due to the coronavirus epidemic and spread over a week to avoid exaggerated crowds at polling stations without undermining participation.

Putin called on the Russians to disperse

There is hardly any doubt about the result. The reforms were approved by the legislature earlier this year, and the new text of the constitution is already in sale in bookstores.

Vladimir Putin on Tuesday directed 110 million voters to urge them to guarantee “stability, security and prosperity” in a country he claims has rebuilt after the chaos following the collapse of the Soviet Union.

“Russia’s sovereignty depends on our sense of responsibility,” he added. However, Vladimir Putin did not refer to the most significant amendment, which allows him to stay in the Kremlin until 2036, the year of his 84th birthday. According to the rule of law, he should have resigned from the Presidency in 2024, at the end of the current mandate. In June, he considered this change necessary so that the country does not get lost in “a pursuit of potential successors”.

In addition to the question of terms of office, the amendments strengthen certain presidential privileges, such as the appointment and dismissal of judges. In addition, there are societal measures such as incorporation into the Constitution of “faith in God” and of marriage as a heterosexual institution. Social principles are also included, such as indexed pensions and guaranteed minimum wages.

Suspicions of fraud and pressure on the vote according to a non-governmental organization

Opponents of the Kremlin, including Alexei Navalny, could not act because of the containment and because they thought the referendum was deceptive and aimed only to guarantee Vladimir Putin “a presidency for life”.

Number two of US diplomacy Stephen Biegun also noted that “many believe” that the vote “will lead to the de facto extension of his life force”.

According to critics of the system, the authorities have multiplied the tricks to ensure successful success and strong participation. The most unusual aspect was the installation of provisional polling stations outside, on farms, sports or playgrounds, without much respect for the secret of the vote or adequate monitoring of the polls.

According to the opposition, the purpose of the maneuver is not to protect the voters from the new corona virus, but to create a tailor-made result. The non-governmental organization that observed the elections in Golos, hated by the authorities, also proclaimed pressure on officials and companies on their employees to pressure them to vote. It has also documented cases with several votes.

“The voters have honestly told us that their job has forced them to come,” said the assessor at a polling station in northwestern Russia, speaking on anonymity terms. At the hearing, Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov spoke of “isolated problems” but said they “do not threaten the credibility of the outcome of the vote”.

With AFP