Ilham Aliyev received Azar Gojayev in a video format on his appointment as head of Kalbajar District Executive Authority

13 may 2020, 14:30

President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has received Azar Gojayev in a video format on his appointment as head of Kalbajar District Executive Authority.

Speaking at the video call, President Ilham Aliyev said:

- You are being appointed as head of the Kalbajar District Executive Authority today. This is a sign of high confidence placed in you. You must live up to this confidence. You are young, you are only 34 years old. Your appointment at the same time indicates that great opportunities are being created for young people. All the conditions are available for their activity as young people are being appointed to senior roles. In particular, serious steps have been taken in this area recently. Representatives of the younger generation are promoted to lead central and local executive bodies. I believe that this is the right step because young people are an active segment of our society. The vast majority of our young people are brought up in the national spirit, in the spirit of patriotism, and today they are ready to apply their knowledge in the interests of a comprehensive development of our country.

In general, young people have played a very active role in the public life of our country in recent years. I would like to highlight the volunteers. This year has been declared a Year of Volunteers by my order. I am very glad that a huge, thousands-strong army of volunteers has appeared in Azerbaijan in a short time. With their hard work and deeds they have managed to gain great sympathy in society. They are making an enormous contribution to our common cause. The volunteer movement began with ASAN volunteers. Today, ASAN volunteers combine the best qualities inherent in Azerbaijani youth, personify these qualities in the true sense of the word. Currently, volunteers carry out a fairly broad range of activities in other areas. I always monitor their activities and appreciate them. On my instruction, volunteers should also be involved in the work of central and local executive bodies. You, as the head of the executive branch, need to pay attention to this issue as well, so that things go better from the point of view of public control, public activity grows and the issues of concern to our people are resolved. To achieve this, of course, central and local executive bodies must, first of all, work effectively. At the same time, public oversight must be at a high level. Therefore, your appointment is a manifestation of trust in you and, at the same time, evidence of the attention being paid to youth. I want to say again: you must justify this high confidence with your work.

Kalbajar is one of the most beautiful parts of Azerbaijan. Picturesque nature, beautiful forests, mountains, rivers. The historical monuments of Kalbajar are the national treasure of the Azerbaijani people. Unfortunately, it is possible to say that the vast majority of all historical monuments located in Kalbajar and other occupied lands have been destroyed or burned out, including the ancient historical monuments of the Azerbaijani people located in the territory of Kalbajar district. But the day will come when we will restore all the destroyed monuments and all the infrastructure in the occupied lands. Azerbaijan will restore its sovereignty. There are many factors that give reason to say this, including our international standing and the recognition of the territorial integrity of our country by the whole world. In recent years, decisions and resolutions of all leading international organizations have expressed unequivocal support for the territorial integrity of our country, including the international community’s non-recognition of the so-called elections recently held by separatists. The unanimous opinion of leading international organizations on this issue has further strengthened our positions and dealt another blow to the separatists, their patrons and aggressive Armenia. At the same time, I am sure that our growing economic potential, military power and increasing authority in the region – all these factors will lead to the full restoration of the sovereignty of the Azerbaijani state. All citizens of Azerbaijan should bring this day closer with their work, and we are working hard in this direction.

The treacherous government of the PFPA-Musavat is guilty of the occupation of Kalbajar. It was because of their treacherous and negligent activities that Kalbajar was occupied in April 1993, our citizens were killed and all our compatriots from Kalbajar became internally displaced. This was not the first crime of the PFPA-Musavat government. The PFPA-Musavat tandem has also played a major negative role in the occupation of Shusha and Lachin. They were fighting for power in Azerbaijan at the time. Their main goal was to come to power at all costs. Today, the marginal group calling itself radical opposition, which has actually found itself in a very miserable plight in the present circumstances, is trying to aggravate the situation in Azerbaijan at all costs. Of course, they are neither strong nor intelligent enough to do that. But their intentions are to tarnish Azerbaijan, to deal a blow to the authority of our country, to cast a shadow on the successful policy we are pursuing during the pandemic, to secure the interests of their foreign patrons, and to fulfill the orders of foreign circles like traitors, the treacherous class, the fifth column.

The occupation of Shusha and Lachin in 1992 is a betrayal, high treason and crime of the PFPA-Musavat tandem against the newly-independent state of Azerbaijan. I want to say again: their main goal at the time was to come to power. The government was quite weak, therefore the surrender of Shusha, the improper organization of Lachin’s defense – these are the crimes committed directly by the PFPA-Musavat government, the then leaders and members of these parties. One of the elements who allegedly organized the defense of Shusha at the time, a traitor, a man who wore a hat but left Shusha and fled like a coward, said: if Shusha is occupied, I will shoot myself. He still hangs around idly in various circles. This is what their deeds are. They surrendered Shusha so that the situation in Azerbaijan would deteriorate, people would revolt and overthrow the government, and they would come to power. And so it happened. Taking advantage of this, having handed over the native lands to the Armenians, the treacherous tandem of the PFPA-Musavat came to power in 1992, after the occupation of Shusha and Lachin. However, in just one year they brought our country into such a terrible state that the people rose, swept them away, threw them into the trashcan and saw the only way of salvation in the person of Heydar Aliyev. Before that, they had committed a great crime by surrendering Kalbajar to the Armenians because the occupation of Kalbajar led to the establishment of a geographical link between Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia. It was no longer a corridor but a vast territory that was under occupation. Of course, this was a major blow dealt to our country, the young Azerbaijani state.

The people of Azerbaijan must not forget this. The people must not forget their enemies. I call them by their proper names. This is the way it should be, because the one who has betrayed the people and the state is a traitor. Anyone who is trying to secure the interests of external circles here, to strike at his own people, the interests of the people and the state is the enemy. There is no other name for this. Everyone should know this.

As a young professional, you should first of all pay great attention to internally displaced persons. The state is paying great attention to internally displaced persons. This has been the main course of our activities ever since I was elected president in 2003. At that time, I said that there would not be a single tent camp left in Azerbaijan in five years. We managed to achieve this in four years. In 2007, there were no tent camps left in Azerbaijan. I must also note that the tent camps, this bitter picture was also the result of the PFPA-Musavat government. After that, we started hard work on improving the living conditions of IDPs and providing them with employment. To date, more than 300,000 internally displaced persons have been provided with homes and apartments. Last year alone, homes were built for 5,000 displaced families. This year, this figure will reach 7,000, maybe even 8,000. The government fulfills all its tasks. The material support for internally displaced persons was further improved by my order last year. The amount of allowance was increased by 50 percent.

You must always be among the people, be with the people and analyze their problems. First of all, of course, you need to fully analyze the situation and be active in addressing people’s problems, the problems of internally displaced persons. There may be issues that local executive bodies cannot resolve. In this case, you must contact central executive authorities. The issues that fall within your competence must, of course, be resolved within your capabilities.

Of course, the principles of social justice should prevail. Justice should be the guiding principle, the guiding thesis in every healthy society, because injustice offends people and undermines their faith. Injustice ultimately leads to major problems. Therefore, the principle of justice must be established in every sphere. For example, this year about 8,000 apartments will be provided to the IDPs. When providing apartments, there should be full transparency. Both the State Committee for Refugee and IDP Affairs and the local executive bodies should work together. It is necessary to keep accurate records of all IDPs. Unfortunately, in previous years these records were not carried out properly. There is evidence that sometimes this was not done intentionally because the lack of accurate records paved the way for various manipulations. We are now doing the revision and we see that in some cases people living in houses built for the IDPs don’t even have an IDP status. We are currently vacating some public buildings and moving the IDPs into new apartments. But then we see, for example, as I was recently informed, that 20 percent of the residents of this building were not even IDPs. How did they get there? Who placed them there? Who registered them? State bodies! They did this in exchange for something. Otherwise, how is it possible that some other people live in a building intended for the IDPs? There are such cases. There were a lot of negative facts in the distribution of apartments. I am told that sometimes they took money from the IDPs even though the state provides them free of charge. These facts are also being investigated. Therefore, first of all, it is necessary to keep accurate records. The State Committee for Refugee and IDP Affairs has been given instructions on this issue. The leaders of relevant local executive bodies should be very careful in this matter and coordinate all the work together.

A serious fight must be waged against negative phenomena. Today this fight is yielding results. I have repeatedly said that the fight against negative phenomena, bribery and corruption will be merciless. Today's picture shows this. Five heads of executive authority have already been arrested, and all these videos and investigation materials are available. In other words, to take away bread from the poor, to embezzle the money due to the poor – this can be considered the biggest crime. The predatory appropriation of aid intended for the poor during a pandemic is nothing short of dishonesty and crime. All five detained heads of the executive authority were engaged in these shady dealings. We allocate these funds so that people who can’t find a job today could at least get a minimum wage and bring home some money. They set their eyes even on that. These are insatiable people. This is a kind of disease, and treatment has already begun. I have given repeated warnings and openly said: if you do not turn off the wrong path and take the right path, then the end will be disastrous, punitive measures will be applied. However, some felt that this would not concern them. Some thought they were above the law. Or they thought that someone would help them – their patrons, the dignitaries who had been supporting them for years. I said that this would not happen. And life has shown that. The theft of payment cards and social assistance – this is only a small part of the crimes.

By my order, millions of manats were allocated for the demolition of unsuitable high-rise buildings in many districts and the construction of new ones instead. However, it later turned out that they took money from people who were provided with apartments in these buildings by the state. The state allocates money and the executive authority of the district does the construction. There were so many violations during construction, so much money has been appropriated – all these facts are being revealed. And after that, a bribe is required for apartments that should be provided to people for free. There is a crime at every step, there is a bribe at every step. This will end! Let no-one doubt that! We have a strong will and no-one can influence it. The people support us, not the criminals, bribe takers and insatiable people. I feel this support every day.

At the same time, I said that negative facts exist not only in local, but also in central executive bodies. There are such signals and information is coming in. I said and warned: stop these things, stop them! They believed that this did not concern them. Now they are facing the bitter consequences. Therefore, as a young professional, you should always pay attention to these factors in the position of head of the executive authority. Honesty, transparency and justice should be the main principles of work for every government official. This should be the principle of work, not bribes, lies, robbery, falsification and dishonesty! Honesty, transparency, service to the people, justice – these are the principles! I repeat: if someone still believes that someone will help them, then they are wrong. If they do not want to repeat the bitter fate of the arrested government officials, they should return to the right path.

I want to say again: you have been given high confidence and you must justify this trust with your work. I have given the instruction to regularly analyze the work of all heads of executive authority and heads of central executive bodies and the results they achieved. After all, the development of each district largely depends on the person who heads it. I said that all our districts should already leave the system of subsidies. A lot of work has been done in this direction. Previously, all our districts lived on subsidies; they could not provide their needs without them. Today, many districts can already provide for themselves, and this process should be continued. There is a need for transparency in the collection of local taxes, complete transparency in the spending of public funds. Socioeconomic development of the districts must be ensured. All these issues are approved in the state programs on the socioeconomic development of the regions anyway – the fourth such program is currently underway. All infrastructure projects, main constructions and all social infrastructure projects are implemented by the state. Therefore, local executive bodies should make effort in this direction. I want to repeat: an order has already been given, an analysis will be made of how effectively government officials work, of their mistakes, so this information will be monitored.

At the same time, public oversight is needed. I want to appeal to our citizens: where there is no public control, there are usually violations. Therefore, you too must involve the public in this, be with the people, live with their problems and work so that both citizens and the government are satisfied with you. If citizens are satisfied with your work, then I will be pleased as well. I wish you success. I am sure that you will justify this trust with your work.

Azar Gojayev: Thank you very much, Mr. President. I express my deep gratitude to you for your support and great confidence in us, young people. In my turn, I want to assure you that I will work continuously in order to justify your high confidence and achieve good results. Thank you, Mr. President!

President Ilham Aliyev: Thank you and good luck to you!