President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev met with the prosecutorial community, setting a number of specific tasks for the representatives of the supervisory authority within the framework of the concept of a “hearing state”. Rigorous protection of the rights of entrepreneurs, neutralization of the causes of potential social discontent, optimization of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan, coordination of the activities of law enforcement agencies with other government agencies – these are just some of the tasks that were discussed at the meeting. Correspondent of “Arguments and Facts” with details.
“Such excesses are unacceptable”
The key topic of the meeting with prosecutors is the protection of business from unnecessary and, as a rule, far-fetched and imposed guardianship of regulatory authorities. Kassym-Jomart Tokayev announced the figures for the number of interventions in entrepreneurial activity over the past three months – more than 500 calls. “Often a situation arises when the controlling authorities, having received the slightest pretext, launch the most real repressions. Documentation is withdrawn that a businessman cannot get back for months. Instead of work, all staff go to interrogations. Such excesses are unacceptable. Prosecutors are obliged to ensure strict observance of the rule of law in business relations with all law enforcement agencies without exception, ”the head of state demanded.
Tokayev stressed that illegal interference of civil servants in business, obstruction of its activities should be considered as a grave crime. “This is not only a loud phrase, it is a call to action,” snapped the president.
Recall that in September 2020, the President of Kazakhstan, speaking in the republican parliament, already criticized such “inspections” in the most corrupt areas (architectural and construction activities, sanitary and epidemiological supervision, veterinary medicine, certification), urging entrepreneurs in case of improper pressure on them by officials “feel free to contact bodies of the prosecutor’s office ”. According to Tokayev’s forecast, the main result of work on the development of small and medium-sized businesses should be an increase by 2025 of its share in the gross domestic product to 35%, and the number of employed – up to 4 million people.
These state efforts to protect businesses have already yielded first results. A tangible effect was given by the moratorium introduced by the head of Kazakhstan, as a result of which inspections of small business entities were reduced by 5 times in 2020 alone. However, illegal inspections continue despite the critical situation with small and medium-sized businesses due to coronavirus restrictions. Indeed, only for the first wave of COVID-19 in the spring of 2020, according to the estimates of the Republican Center for Assistance to Entrepreneurs, about 30% of small businesses, employing 1.5 million people, were under threat of closure in Kazakhstan. It is for this reason that President Tokayev demanded that illegal checks be equated with grave crimes.
“There is no alternative to digitalization”
An important topic is the optimization and humanization of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan, and in this issue, according to the head of state, the opinion of the general public, civil activists and experts should be taken into account. One of the key decisions in this direction is the abolition of the death penalty in Kazakhstan, the moratorium on which was in effect from January 1, 2004 to September 24, 2020.
“There is no need to scatter the efforts of the investigative and operational apparatus on minor offenses,” Kassym-Zhomart Tokayev emphasized. – When an employee is overloaded with cases, he gives priority to those of them that are easiest to complete and send to court. In such a situation, the rights of citizens and the real fight against crime fade into the background. ”
Therefore, the president continued, the victims have been waiting for months to see any results from the work of the investigators. To develop the topic, the prosecutor’s office presented intelligent solutions designed to significantly relieve the work of the law enforcement system. First of all, these are digital projects “Electronic Criminal Case”, “Electronic Appeals”, “Analytical Center”, as well as electronic unified registers of administrative proceedings and subjects and objects of checks. Thus, Kazakhstani prosecutors already today have the opportunity to coordinate some decisions of the pre-trial investigation bodies online. “I am glad to state that significant work has been done in the right direction. And this work should be continued, expanded, because there is no alternative to digitalization, ”the head of state stated.
In addition, in Kazakhstan, a three-tier model of criminal procedure is being introduced, in the professional language called the “prosecutor’s filter”, thanks to which 692 people were freed from criminal prosecution in just one month. The President demanded that all major procedural decisions pass through such a filter. “Not a single fact of violation of the law should be ignored by the prosecutor,” Tokayev said.
The prosecutor’s office as the most proactive agency
Finally, the head of state focused on the coordination of the activities of law enforcement agencies with other government departments. As an example of such interaction, the president cited the investigation of the activities of financial pyramids.
“For example, many of our fellow citizens become victims of financial pyramids. More than 17 thousand victims are involved in one criminal case alone. To implement such criminal schemes, attackers repeatedly carry out the same type of transactions and only then disappear from sight. If such suspicious activity is detected in a timely manner, it would be possible to save many people from rash steps and ensure the inevitability of punishment for fraudsters, ”Tokayev said, asking the newly created Agency for Financial Monitoring to help with information resources.
According to the president, the tug-of-war is a big mistake. “It is clear that no one wants to lose their authority, but the cornerstone should be placed not on personal ambitions and departmental interests, but on the interests of the entire society and state,” the head of state emphasized. In this regard, he called for reformatting the activities of the Coordination Council of the Republic of Kazakhstan, focusing on finding new approaches to improving the work of the entire law enforcement system. “In general, the prosecutor’s office in such matters should be as proactive as possible,” said Kassym-Zhomart Tokayev.
“I emphasize once again: legality and justice must be ensured by default. It must be remembered that the fate of people depends on mistakes in criminal cases, “the head of state emphasized, recalling that an important criterion of a rule of law is impartial and fair justice, and the main goal of all reforms in Kazakhstan is to build an economically strong, democratically developed and focused on satisfaction. needs of every citizen “hearing state”.
In general, the President of Kazakhstan positively assessed the work of the law enforcement system, specifying that in the context of a pandemic, crime in the country decreased by 30%.