The “Jurassic Park” of Armenian politics

The “Jurassic Park” of Armenian politics

Appearance of “political dinosaurs” like Gehamyan, Harutyunyan and Babukhanyan on RPA list stirs huge interest.

The Council of the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) approved on March 18 its electoral lists comprising 250 candidates standing for the parliamentary elections due on May 6. The list is quite interesting, to say the least. For instance, the ex-speaker of the National Assembly and head of RPA election office Hovik Abrahamyan is placed the second while Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan comes the third. However, the main surprise of the list is the abundance of “strangers”, representatives of other parties or new members of RPA.

PanARMENIAN.Net - “We are heading for the elections with a larger list involving people who support policy of President Serzh Sargsyan and are committed to contribute to implementation of these programs,” vice-speaker of the National Assembly Eduard Sharmazanov told the journalists. He also reminded that RPA’s previous lists as well included people who were not RPA members, particularly, during elections in 2003 and 2007.Still, the most surprising circumstance in relation to the list is the emergence of “political dinosaurs” like Artashes Gehamyan, Khosrov Harutyunyan and Hayk Babukhanyan. Steven Spielberg is going to shoot a fourth sequel of the “Jurassic Park” shortly, but Armenia seems to be taking the lead, with its next parliament intending to catch up with the Jurassic Park already in May with regard to the number of fossil characters.

Rumours about the above-mentioned figures’ joining the parliament have been circulating for quite a while; still, one wanted to believe RPA will not go for it. The thing is not even the names these opposition politicians used to call each other and the authorities, including the current president Serzh Sargsyan. The question is, how the powerful RPA can benefit from these figures who have failed in their political careers over the past years, who once headed rather influential political forces and now cannot even secure a parliamentary seat without RPA's assistance.

The politicians explain their joining the RPA list by a wish to unite efforts of the national-conservative forces. “Platforms of the RPA and the Constitutional Right Union (CRU) are very similar, the ideology basing on the national-conservative concept we present. That’s why I believe it is absolutely natural than CRU is standing for the elections jointly with the RPA, with its list. I think this is clear with regard to both ideological and political criteria,” CRU head Hayk Babukhanyan declared.

After this, the only question that emerges is how RPA members will see parliamentary mandates gone to others who enter the National Assembly instead of them, but due to their efforts. Many experts think that Geghamyan and others will rather be lumber for RPA instead of providing real support at upcoming elections.

“They will be a problem for the Republican Party of Armenia because they are virtual people already. I realize that these people are running for the parliament just to oppose the Armenian National Congress (ANC). This means these people will be used against the ANC on the parliament arena. But the RPA itself should weigh all pros and contras. I believe their inclusion in the list will bring much more contras than pros,” Armenian political expert Karen Kocharyan once said on the issue.

Finally, the political forecast for the potential heirs to “good business” of Geghamyan, Harutyunyan and Babukhanyan during elections in 2017 is as follows: if current trends are maintained, leader of Orinats Yerkir party Artur Baghdasaryan is likely to complement or even replace them.

Hayk Khalatyan / PanARMENIAN News
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