The medieval history of Kazakhstan includes occupation by various peoples such as the Yubans, Turks, Mongols and Arabs. The Kazakh Khanate ruled the area from 1465 to 1731, until the Russian Empire conquered Kazakh territory. The short-lived autonomy of Alash (1917-1920) was replaced by the Soviet Union until the Republic of Kazakhstan took office by 1991. Nursultan Nazarbayev led the country as the first elected president and has held office ever since. The World Economic Forum declared Kazakhstan the 50th place in the 2015 government efficiency index.
The executive branch of the government of Kazakhstan
The President of Kazakhstan is elected every five years by popular vote. The president appoints the prime minister as well as the first deputy prime minister. The Council of Ministers also receives appointments from the President. The president is recognized as Kazakhstan’s commander-in-chief of the armed forces. It reserves the right to repeal a law approved by the Kazakh parliament. President Nazarbayev added further powers by presidential decree. It can now dissolve parliament, appoint heads of city and regional administrations, appoint and dismiss the government, call referendums and introduce constitutional changes. The country’s prime minister chairs the Council of Ministers. In addition to 17 ministers, Kazakhstan also has three deputy prime ministers. The prime minister is fulfilling his mandate as instructed by President Nazarbayev.
Legislative power of the government of Kazakhstan
The two chambers carry out legislative tasks in Kazakhstan. 77 seats exist in the assembly or Mazhiliswhere there are ten proportional seats and the remaining 67 constituencies with one seat. The members of the assembly are elected for four years. The Senate consists of 47 members, seven of whom receive appointments from the president, and the other 40 are elected by the local assembly in constituencies from two seats to six years. Former presidents are also lifelong senators ex officio. Most laws presented in Parliament are proposed by the government.
The judiciary of the government of Kazakhstan
There are local and regional courts in Kazakhstan’s judicial structure. At the national level is the Supreme Court which has 44 judges. Local courts are the first instance courts in Kazakhstan and they hear less serious crimes, including vandalism. Regional courts adjudicate in difficult cases, and appeals from those courts go to the Supreme Court. Regional courts also offer cases in rural areas where there are no local courts, and also receive appeals from local courts. The Ministry of Justice recommends that the President approve the list of subordinate judges. Regional judges are appointed by the President of Kazakhstan on the proposal of the Supreme Judicial Council. The Supreme Judicial Council of Kazakhstan has the task of appointing judges to the Supreme Court, and the Senate approves their names. The country’s constitution provides for the establishment of a seven-member constitutional council. The council has a mandate to decide on the constitutionality of the laws of the Kazakh parliament. The Council also decides on challenges for referendums and elections and also has the right to interpret the constitution.
Administration of Kazakhstan
Apart from 14 districts of Astana and Almaty, Kazakhstan also has 14 provinces. Each province is headed by a provincial governor or akim appointed by the president. Provincial akims appoint municipal akims. The Kazakh government has Astana as its current capital.