The new 30th Prime Minister will be Ukhnaa Khürelsükh
Acting Prime Minister of Mongolia Ukhnaa Khürelsükh has been nominated by the MPP to become the next 30th Prime Minister of Mongolia.
U. Khürelsükh (age 49) received 63.9 percent of the votes from 294 members of the Conference of the Mongolian People’s Party which was held on 25 and 26 September.
The candidate to the new Prime Minister U. Khürelsükh is a legal expert by profession. He had served as a political officer in the Mongolian People’s Army. He has twice served as the President of the Mongolian Democratic Socialist Youth Union (From 1997-1999 and 2000-2005). He was a member of the Steering Council of the MPP from 2000-2007. Khürelsükh also served as the General Secretary of the Party from 2008-2012. He was thrice elected to the Parliament of Mongolia (2000-2004, 2004-2008 and 2012-2016). Khürelsükh has also four times served as a Cabinet member during which he held the portfolio of Minister of Emergency (2004-2006), Minister of Specialized Inspection (2006-2008), and Deputy Prime Minister (2014-2015 and 2016).
From 7 September 2017 after PM J. Erdenebat was forced to resign, Khürelsükh has been serving as the Acting Deputy Prime Minister of Mongolia.
In a related development, M. Enkhbold, Speaker of the Parliament and Chairman of MPP has reached a consensus with the President of Mongolia Kh. Battulag (photo left) on the nomination of U. Khürelsükh to the post of the next Prime Minister of the country. Under the Constitution, the President has the prerogative right to submit to the Parliament for consideration the proposal for the appointment of the Prime Minister within 5 days after receiving the relevant proposal from the Party with a majority of seats in the Parliament.
The President, in his official response, has requested the Parliament to urgently consider the issue of appointing the new Prime Minister.
The matter will be considered at the Fall Session of the Parliament, that opens on Monday, 2 October.
President apologizes for political persecutions 80 years ago
Mongolian President Kh. Bat-tulag, on behalf of the Mongolian state, has sought apology from the politically persecuted and their families on the Day Commemorating the Politically persecuted, which is observed every year on 10 September.
In two years between 1937 and 1939, at the height of political persecution, 20,474 people were executed by shooting from among 25,824 people who were accused of treason. A total of almost 17 thousand Buddhist lamas were accused of wrongdoing on trumped-up charges, of whom 14 thousand were executed.
“We are gathered here today to remember those darks days that we can never forget,” said President Battulag speaking on the occasion. “Political persecution is a brutal that cannot be carried out by the state at any time and which must not be repeated, which is an expression of the hidden conspiracy to destroy the leading mind and immunity of a nation. I hope the Mongolian state would never again persecute its people… and create a strong democracy and justice…for which it is appropriate for the Mongolian state to seek full apology from the persecuted, their families, children and the future generation.”
Teachers on strike and doctors demand pay increase
Mongolian teachers, demanding a substantial salary increase, are on strike. As of today, almost 90 percent of all secondary school teachers in the 21 aimags of the country have gone on a ‘warning’ strike.
School teachers receive a monthly salary of approximately MNT650 thousand (1 US$=MNT2470) despite their unlimited time dedicated to the education of children. The teachers are demanding a salary increase to almost MNT1.6 million, which is almost 2.5 times more than the present salary.
The teachers are also urging that the work of the teachers should be realistically assessed and they should be included in the category of civil servants thus renewing their salary scale. Additionally, the teachers are urging the state to give priority to improving the quality of the education sector and by the year 2020 bring their salary to the level of international standards, that is, $3,500 a month.
At the same time, Mongolian doctors are also demanding a 50 percent increase in their salary.
The economic situation in the country is not at its best to meet these demands, but the sectoral ministries have promised to consider these demands. However, it is unlikely their demands, especially of the teachers, would be fully met.
The President on off-shore account
On 24 July 2017, the newly elected President Kh. Battulag had made an appeal to the close off shore accounts and place that money in the Mongolian banks and a grace period of 49 days was given for the action. The 49-day-grace-period ended on 12 September.
In this connection, the President, during his meeting with some media to talk about the UN General Assembly, also dwelt on his off-shore account appeal.
The President said, “I had shown generosity. It was a kind of a reminder that pardon would be granted if the cash put in an off-shore account before the law came into force would be brought back home,” and asked why the Independent Authority Against Corruption was set up. The President indicated that he believes IAAC should be working to find the bribery money of politicians. “Regrettably this agency, to this day, has not even moved a single finger on the matter,” the President lamented and underlined that “this is an evidence that there is a conflict of interest.”
The President, however, ruled out that he would now sabre rattle but revealed that he would work to put pressure of the agencies that are responsible for the matter to work harder.
Not a single politician had turned in a single penny from any offshore account, if they had one.
IPU concerned about the flawed justice in Mongolian MP’s assassination case
The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), a global organization of national parliaments in its press release issued on 14 September has expressed concern about the flawed justice in former Mongolian MP Sanjaasüren Zorig’s assassination case.
A delegation of IPU’s Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians has expressed deep concern about the flawed justice, torture and intimidation in the investigation of the 1998 assassination of the parliamentarian and Minister of Infrastructure S. Zorig. He is regarded by many as the leader of the democratic movement in Mongolia in the early 1990s.
The IPU delegation was on a three-day mission to Mongolia from 11-13 September 2017. At the end of the mission, the IPU delegation confirmed concerns that the trial and conviction of three individuals for the assassination of S. Zorig violated international fair-trial standards and further undermined the legitimacy and integrity of the judicial process.
The secrecy of the investigation, trial and court decisions has created a climate of suspicion and rumors. Secret evidence was not accessible to the prosecutor’s office or to legal counsel. According to the IPU delegation, this has made it impossible to ensure respect for the right to a fair trial.
The leader of the delegation, Afghani MP, Ms. Fawzia Koofi, stated, “We are concerned about recurrent and credible reports about the use of torture and corruption to divert the course of justice in this case. We are shocked that such reports do not appear to have been seriously addressed by the judicial authorities through independent, credible and transparent procedures.”
In its dialogue with the authorities the IPU delegation met, it called for the judiciary to remedy the existing serious flaws by ordering a public re-trial in the presence of domestic and international observers. There is an urgent need to establish the truth.
The IPU Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians provides protection and redress for MPs whose human rights have been violated or who are at risk. Examining the case since 2000, the Committee has made three fact-finding visits and taken 50 decisions as part of its investigation into the assassination of S. Zorig. The IPU Committee promises to never give up until justice is served, emphasizes the IPU press release.