The presidential elections in Russia's Caucasus: loyalty to the Kremlin is vital

The presidential elections took place in three Russian regions: in the republics of Yakutia, Kabardino-Balkaria, and Adigeya. Of course, the elections in Yakutia caused the biggest interest, because they were accompanied with many scandals. The elections in the other two regions are also worth mentioning, for they should exert influence on the development of the situations in the regions.

There was no ground-breaking news for the Kremlin in that respect. The incumbent head of the republic of Kabardino-Balkaria, Valery Kokov, was the winner. RIA Novosti news agency reported that he won 87.18% of the vote. His main opponent, Deputy Dommander of the Russian troops in the northwest Lieutenant-General Muhamed Batyrov, gained 8.39% of the vote. Kokov's victory is very convincing, and nobody actually thought that there would anything different. Kokov managed to assure everyone of his own irreplaceability, being in the position of president of the republic since 1992. Kokov has also managed to establish stability in the republic.

The elections in the republic of Adigeya, however, had some intrigues. Incumbent President Aslan Jarimov lost, having gained only 10.17% of the vote. The winner of the election is Khazret Sovmen, the manager of the joint-stock company Gold-Mining Cooperative Association Polus, who enjoyed 68.83% of electorate’s vote. So, we may congratulate Adigeya on their new president.

The electorate was rather active in both republics: 82.5% of the population of Kabardino-Balkaria showed up to the polls as well as 62% in Adigeya. However, the activity of the electorate is not surprising news, taking into consideration the fact that the Caucasian people are basically always active when it comes to elections.

The elections in the two Caucasian republics proved once again that the candidates who convince the Kremlin of their loyalty have the best shot for the victory. Kokov managed to do that without any major problems. Aslan Jarimov, who used to support Ruslan Aushev (the president of the republic of Ingushetia), failed to do that, and Moscow decided not to support him. Moscow was not taking much efforts for that, because the situation in Adigeya was quiet and it did not depend much on Jarimov.

It should also be mentioned that the ability to provide for the stable situation in the republics of the Northern Caucasus is also one of the main conditions for victory in the elections besides loyalty to the Kremlin. This ability is an extremely important quality. Therefore, one should not expect there will be other people elected in the presidential elections in the republics of Dagestan, North Osetia, Karachayevo-Cherkessia, ect.

At the same time, the mentioned republics of the region are far from being the leading ones in terms of economic development. This detail cannot but cause concern, since the economic situation is a major factor for the stable situation in the Northern Caucasus. The main problem is the leader, a person who must efficiently manage the economy of his republic and solve the issues connected with the religious and ethnic groups. It seems like there is nobody who is able to offer a solution of these problems.

Oleg Artyukov PRAVDA.Ru

Translated by Dmitry Sudakov

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