During the “Nation-Army 2017” conference in April, Defense Minister Vigen Sargsyan introduced the “I am” and “I have the Honor” programs. The programs were launched with the start of the 2017 winter conscription in November. However, the programs have some legislative gaps.
According to the “I am” program introduced by Vigen Sargsyan, by the end of the military service, “about 5 million AMD will be transferred” to the account of the serviceman for the purpose of purchasing an apartment, constructing a mini-farm, or paying the tuition fee. Clause 4 of Article 63 of RA Law on “Military Service and Status of the Serviceman” stipulates that, in this case, ”the amount of the remuneration, the order of paying and managing it shall be defined by the RA Government”. Though the program introduced by the Defense Ministry is already in effect, there is no RA Government decision on the definition of the promised remuneration of 5 million AMD. Neither the amount nor the its management directions have been defined.
It means that at this moment the remuneration of 5 million AMD about which public officials announce, the mass media talk and the Defense Ministry videos tell is not stipulated by any document. In the telephone conversation with us, Spokesperson for the Ministry of Defense Artsrun Hovhannisyan confirmed that there is no government decision defining the 5 million AMD payment yet, and that it will be available “during one-two months”.
This might not have been a problem if the conscripts were not required to make a decision regarding participation in the “I am” program before December 29 (in fact, the military enlistment offices demand a decision by December 27).
It means that the conscripts should decide now if they are ready to serve for 3 years with the expectation to receive remuneration, the amount and management directions of which have not been defined yet (and they must rely solely on Vigen Sargsyan’s oral promise).
We should add that Artsrun Hovhannisyan denies the concern that the conscripts who choose the program during the current conscription call may have problems due to this legislative gap, referring to the respective statement by Vigen Sargsyan, which, at this moment, is the only basis for the payment of the remuneration promised by the “I am” program.