14 Feb 2022 18:06

Turkmen leader's son nominated as presidential candidate

ASHGABAT. Feb 14 (Interfax) - Turkmenistan's Vice Premier Serdar Berdimuhamedow has been nominated as a candidate to succeed his father, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, during an election due on March 12, the Turkmen online news outlet @salamnews_rus said.

His candidacy was put forward by the Democratic Party at the ninth extraordinary congress on Monday.

"The Turkmenistan Convention Center today hosted the 9th extraordinary congress of the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan. The agenda: nomination for President of Turkmenistan of the Cabinet of Ministers' deputy chairman Serdar Gurbangulyyevich Berdimuhamedow," a statement said.

Last Friday, in the Halk Maslahaty, or People's Council (the upper house of parliament) the incumbent president, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, who has been president for 15 years, announced his intention to cede office to a young leader and remain only as Chairman of the People's Council.

The early presidential election is scheduled for March 12, 2022.

Under the Turkmen constitution, a presidential candidate must be a Turkmen citizen, born in Turkmenistan, be at least 40 years of age, be fluent in the official language, and have continuously worked and lived in the country for the past 15 years.

On Monday, the Central Commission for Elections and Referenda announced the launch of the election campaign. From February 14, political parties and citizen initiative groups can start gathering to nominate their candidates for the top job.

Serdar Berdimuhamedow is currently Vice Premier who has been in charge of finance and economy since July 2021. He turned 40 on September 22 last year.

Previously, he served as governor of the central Akhal region from June 17, 2019; minister of industry and construction from February 7, 2020; and as Vice Premier, Chairman of the Supreme Audit Chamber and a member of the national security council from February 11, 2021. As such, he was responsible, among other things, for the digitization and technological innovation of the public administration system, the financial and economic sector, and the social sector.