The prescripts of the Tarnovo Constitution give us freedom to this day - freedom of the press, freedom of rallies, meetings and demonstrations, personal freedom, freedom for everyone who lives in Bulgaria, said the National Assembly President Mihail Mikov at the opening of the conference "135 Years Bulgarian Parliamentarism". The event marking the anniversary of the adoption of the Tarnovo Constitution was held in the premises of the Constituent Assembly in Veliko Tarnovo.
"Today we are in the hall where 135 years ago assembled 229 notables - but not in the sense of wealth, but in terms of spiritual elevation. These enlightened Bulgarians within a few months of work laid the foundations of free Bulgaria", Mihail Mikov said. He recalled that the founders came from the 5 provinces - Varna, Ruse, Tarnovo, Sofia and Vidin at a time when Bulgaria was seeking its own path on the map of modern European countries, when the pain from the Berlin Congress decisions and the solving the Bulgarian national question faced them with the dilemma either to establish the Principality or seek unification of the Bulgarian lands.
In his message to the audience in the hall comprising MPs, lawyers, historians, public figures and citizens the Speaker of Parliament said that the Constituent Assembly had its ups and downs, its failed sittings - when those who did not accept the separation of Bulgaria insisted to adopt the constitution after the unification of Bulgaria. In his words, reason prevailed thus giving birth to the Constitution of the Principality.
The founders back then enjoyed complete freedom, for the constitution, as rights of the Bulgarian people laid down in it, is not given by the king, the prince or the monarch. It is a magnificent creation of our ancestors, one that we should be proud of today and derive legal standards from, said National Assembly President Mihail Mikov.
Thus freedom becomes a supreme value, that originated in the cell of the Hilendar monk, passed through religious and revolutionary struggles, the bloody days of the April Uprising to reach the sacred hall of the Constituent Assembly. Freedom is to become the main line of the Tarnovo Constitution. Having transcended time, freedom has become the greatest testimonial of the Bulgarian intellectual thought after the Liberation, added the President.
The Rector of the Veliko Tarnovo University "St. St. Cyril and Methodius", Prof. Plamen Legkostup, stressed in his address that today it is worth not only to remember but also to feel the driving force, the exceptional energy pushing the Constituent Assembly to fulfill its mission. The Tarnovo Constitution gives full expression of the most democratic aspirations of the Bulgarian nation and the desire to take a worthy place among the European nations, he added.
The Minister of Education Prof. Aneliya Klisarova read a congratulatory address to the conference on behalf of Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski. I would like to state in my capacity as Minister of Education that we shall teach our children to preserve the statehood, to be faithful citizens of this country as well as good people and always uphold the interests of their homeland, said on her own behalf Minister Aneliya Klisarova.
In his address, the President of the Supreme Court of Cassation Prof. Lazar Gruev noted that the constituent fathers have demonstrated how to uphold the spirit and independence of the country. In his words, they have displayed self-confidence of an ancient nation and a respected country in Europe.
Among the keynote speakers at the forum were the President of the Constitutional Court, Prof. Prof. Dimitar Tokushev, Ph.D. and Prof. Andrey Pantev.
A message to the participants was also sent by His Holiness Patriarch Neophyte.
The conference in Veliko Tarnovo was organized by the National Assembly together with the Veliko Tarnovo University "St. St. Cyril and Methodius", the Faculties of History and Law of "St. Kliment Ohridski" Sofia University and with the assistance of the Regional Museum of History in Veliko Tarnovo.