Bulgarian President Calls for Completing Reforms of Judiciary, Healthcare

In his New Year’s address to the nation delivered in the last minutes of 2015, Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev called for completing without delays the long overdue reforms in the judiciary, healthcare, education and energy sector.


Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev

Plevneliev wished all Bulgarians health, happiness, wisdom and confidence in their thoughts and actions during the new year. According to him, people are eager for justice and expect real results. In his words, an energy for change has developed and this was demonstrated by the results from the referendum on the introduction of remote electronic voting when nearly two million Bulgarians said “yes” to electronic voting, which was a huge success for the active civil society.

Plevneliev noted that citizens should be an active part in the process of decision-making, which would be beneficial for achieving political stability in the country. The president called on politicians to show determination, honesty and moral and remember that the main aim of politics should be to improve the wellbeing of people and to make the state modern, socially responsible and just. In his opinion, democratic institutions serving the people are the symbol of a successful state. He admitted that Bulgarian democracy is not perfect as it is not functioning well all the time.

The head of state pointed that the power of Bulgarians lies in their firm roots, spirituality, values, tolerance and respect for the other. He called for integrating with modern and democratic Europe, but without forgetting the legacy of the forefathers. This could be achieved by fulfilling the Bulgaria 2020 national programme and devising a plan on the development of Bulgaria up to 2030. In his words, the focus should be on improving democracy and putting the state into order.

For this to happen, entrepreneurs have to abide by the rules, while institutions should work closer to the people and solve their problems. There was also need to clean the Bulgarian sea, land and nature, to make the cities and villages more modern and cosy. As regards the international situation, he noted the hard times of geopolitical changes and the record number of crises affecting Europe and the world.

Turning to the lessons of history, Plevneliev noted that lasting peace is possible only with cooperation and international rules applicable to all. He added that differences should be dealt with in a peaceful way, not through war. According to him, the power of a nation should be judged not by its territory and military might, but rather by its cultural and educational achievements, the faith and inspiration of the people. The Bulgarian president warned against going back to ideas and ideologies of the past as the new era requires new ideas.

He noted that nowadays no single state, even the most powerful one, can deal on its own with all the challenges and no nation has immunity against terrorism, climate change, economic stagnation, the migratory wave. In his opinion, only by working together people can put the world into order and make it a better place for living, where peace, rule of law and human progress reign supreme.

Plevneliev stated that international affairs should be dealt with through dialogue and cooperation rather than spheres of influence, with isolation, populism and nationalism not the way to go.

He called on all to remember that nothing is a given – peace, democracy, human rights and freedoms should be constantly safeguarded.

01 January 2016