Afonin reacts to Mitrokhin’s call to ban moving Stalin monument to Penza city center
Penza, 3 August 2015. PenzaNews. Yuri Afonin, deputy chairman of the State Duma committee on physical education, sports and youth affairs, presidium and Central Committee member of the CPRF, posted his reaction to the call of Sergei Mitrokhin, leader of “Yabloko” political party, for the prosecutor’s office to warn Georgy Kamnev, Penza region Legislative Assembly deputy and head of the regional Communist Party branch, against moving the Joseph Stalin monument to the Penza city center.
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“The regional CPRF committee in Penza is moving into a new building in the city center, and therefore they will be bringing the small monument to Joseph Stalin by the committee building along with them. This caused a nervous outrage online for some liberalists. Surprisingly, the head of ‘Yabloko’ political party, Mr. Mitrokhin, demanded to block this move. First of all, this is surprising because the head ‘yablokoist,’ as far as I remember, had never been to Penza and yet decided to intervene into the Penza affairs. Secondly, in my opinion, a leader of an opposition party could find a more sensible thing to do in a social and economic crisis than fighting monuments,” Yuri Afonin wrote in his Facebook.
He reminded that this was not the first time Sergei Mitrokhin “fights a ‘heroic’ fight with monuments.”
“Shortly before, he eagerly demanded the prosecutor’s office to force the Lipetsk city administration to remove a Stalin monument installed by their local Communists. Mr. Mitrokhin is not even hindered by the fact that his fight against monuments makes him resemble the Soviet-monument-fighting neo-Nazis in Ukraine on its way from riches to rags more and more,” the State Duma deputy stressed.
Joseph Stalin remains an important personality in the country’s history, regardless of whether the liberals want it or not, he added.
“He was the head of the state who led the country to crush the Fascists. He nurtured an economic marvel through the Stalin age ‘pyatiletkas.’ Back then, our country showed the economic growth the likes of which had never been seen in the world or even imagined. The Stalin’s age saw the emergence of the nuclear missile shield that protected our cities from becoming radioactive ruins. We must remember that. These are the same points I spoke this February in the State Duma on behalf of my party when presenting a project to rename the heroic city of Volgograd back to Stalingrad, and name one of the Moscow’s squares of streets after Joseph Stalin with a relevant monument. Unfortunately, the members of the ruling party were reluctant to listen to the Communists. But we pushed and will be pushing to preserve the good name of the Soviet leader – and protect the Stalin monuments against those who are trying to erase the memories of the Soviet age from our history,” Yuri Afonin wrote.
He noted that the CPRF fraction recently introduced a law draft on housing repairs aimed at “stopping the thieving extortion of money.”
“The law demands the funds for capital repairs to be transferred to accounts of every separate apartment building. It also enforces the government to pay for no less than 85% of repair costs for each home. In the times when the crisis of the Russian capitalist economy led to decrease in people’s incomes, this law will ensure their social security. I would like to ask Mitrokhin to stop fighting monuments and do something useful – like supporting the CPRF repairs law. And leave fighting monuments to the weak,” the Communist party politician summed up.
As PenzaNews agency reported earlier, the Joseph Stalin monument was opened in Penza on July 15, 2011, in the CPRF regional committee building on Darvina proyezd.
The monument was ordered by German Karpov and cast in South Ossetia. The members and followers of CPRF in the Penza region gathered some 100,000 rubles for its creation, while the regional CPRF branch took the expenses related to improvement of the nearby plot of land and the installation of the monument.
In July 2015, the Communist party members announced their plans to move the Joseph Stalin monument to the new party office branch building on Kirova street, 24B.