"The general picture of Belarus' socio-economic 'prosperity' is as follows: only 1% of employees live tolerably, more or less. After all, a salary of BYN 1000 is not so great money, and in any way – below the once USD 500. And all the rest of the population fails to fit into minimum consumer budgets," Igor Komlik, one of the leaders of the REP Trade Union, believes.
Who is no longer a "parasite"?
The Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus has abridged, by its Resolution No. 333 of May 25, 2019, the list of citizens to be included into the database of "parasites" (persons not-engaged in the national economy). So, who are the lucky ones excluded?
Now, the spouses of those appointed to hold positions in intergovernmental bodies (provided for in international treaties of Belarus or decisions of the respective international bodies) are excluded from the "parasite" database. The same concerns the spouses of the defence attachés at Belarus' embassies abroad.
The Ministry of Labour also excludes citizens who work in foreign or international organizations, based on the information provided by these organizations.
The military commissariats should transfer the information about conscripts called up and sent to places of their passage of military service, or service in the reserve, to the respective district "parasite" commissions.
Personal responsibility has also been introduced for providing reliable information for the formation (updating) of the "parasite" database for state servants of various levels.
"Why Belarusian housewife in Belarus differs from same housewife living abroad?"
Igor Komlik has noted that despite the amendments, the ordinance remains unconstitutional: "The amendments are immediately suggesting an interesting idea: is the property of state servants owned by their wives (husbands)? Obviously, the ordinance touched a certain caste of officials, and it was necessary to promptly correct the situation. Indeed, the sanctions provided for by the ordinance, cover, first of all, owners of property. The bottom line is that officials register their property to their wives, and corporate solidarity forced them to amend the ordinance. If the spouses (wives) of those who work abroad are freed from increased utility bills, they are most likely housewives there. It is completely incomprehensible: why are Belarusian housewives living abroad better than housewives living in Belarus?"
"There is one more points that makes me laugh and worry at the same time. The above resolution of the Council of Ministers appeared against the background of the statements of Alexander Turchin, First Vice-Premier, that it's time to deal with the enterprises, where the salary is less than BYN 400 a month – up to liquidation of them. This means that the army of unemployed will increase; and at the same time, they will have to pay increased utility bills for not being able to find job. Imagine the situation: somewhere in the region an enterprise has 300 workers with the average salary of BYN 395 (according to Mr Turchin, it should be closed), while three persons there receive BYN 1000 each; then, the average salary goes up to BYN 401 – the enterprise will not be closed. However, after paying all the taxes, a worker has BYN 335 in hand. Officials address their corporate interests, completely without thinking about how people will live having lost their jobs."
"The unconstitutional ordinance remains such despite amendments. Practically all human rights organizations in Belarus believe that a number of provisions thereof unconstitutional; therefore, it's alarming that only the Judges of the Constitutional Court remain silent, although they have powers to assess, on their own initiative, any document for the compliance with the Constitution. It's still more disturbing that the Judges of the Constitutional Court know very well that the ordinance is unconstitutional focus, but for some reason they are shy to check it for compliance with the Constitution," Igor Komlik has concluded.