ASTANA, November 16 (Itar-Tass) — Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev has signed a decree dissolving the Majilis, the lower house of parliament, and fixing and early electtion for January 15, 2012.
The lower house was dissolved on the initiative proposed by a group of Majilis members. Their appeal to theHead of State was signed by 53 parliamentarians out of 107. The reasons they gave for their initititives were theneed to hold an early election as soon as possible ahead of a new wave of recession so that "all State bodies, the governmen and parliament would not have to divert their attention to the holding of elections, and will concentrate on the implementation of anti-recessional measures", and the advisability "without delay to activate the democratic mechanism making it possible to form a multi-party parliament".
According to the Constitution, the Majilis consists of 107 members, with 98 of them being elected on party tickets on the basis of universal suffrage and nine being elected by the Assembly of the People of Kazakhstan.
In the previous make-up of the lower house, all the 98 Majilis members, elected on party tickets, represented the Nur Otan party which had won the elections of August 18, 2007, whereas the other parties had been unable to overcome the seven-percent barrier.