Kazakhstan could see first female presidential candidate as Ak Zhol party nominates Yespayeva

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Kazakhstan could see first female presidential candidate as Ak Zhol party nominates Yespayeva


The Ak Zhol party nominated April 24 Daniya Yespayeva as its candidate for the 9 June presidential election. If confirmed by the Kazakhstan Central Election Commission, Yespayeva would be the first woman in Kazakh history to run for president.

Yespayeva, a banker from the Aktobe Region, received 49.5% of the party’s 190 voters in a secret ballot.

Along with Yespayeva, five other members of the party nominated themselves. They are the head of the Kazakh Union of Builders, Talgat Yergaliyev (Nur-Sultan), a lecturer at the East Kazakhstan State University, Kuat Rakhimberdin (Oskemen), entrepreneur Asan Koshmambetov (Taraz), entrepreneur Serik Yerubayev (Atyrau) and lawyer Yevgeny Kinzel (Petropavlovsk).

In her election speech, Yespayeva spoke about the women’s rights and corruption pointing out that those punished for corruption are predominantly male.

“At the plenum, there was a phrase of some of our men that (think) among the Kazakhs, a woman has never been ahead, and (they think) a woman should know her place. It really hurt me. Some 52% of Kazakhstan’s population are women. What is the main issue? The issue of mothers and large families. I, as a woman and a mother, can thoroughly understand this issue and find real, right solutions,” she said, as reported by sputniknews.kz.

Fifty-eight-year-old Yespayeva was born in the Zhaisan village of the Aktobe Region. She is a member of the Committee on Finance and Budget of the Kazakh Parliament’s Mazhilis (lower house of Parliament).

She is a member of the Atameken Union Board in Aktobe and a member of the Coordination Council of the region. For more than 14 years, she was a member of the Committee on Family and Women Affairs at the regional akimat (administration). She was elected a deputy to the regional Maslikhat (assembly) in 2008 and 2012.

Click here to read the full article published by Euroactiv on 2 May 2019.