Berri Seeking to Boost Women’s Participation in Parliament, Lower Voting Age to 18إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Speaker Nabih Berri is exerting efforts to boost women’s participation in parliament and lowering the voting age to18 years, according to An Nahar newspaper on Tuesday.
“Women deserve to be represented at parliament… and we no longer hear about lowering the voting age to 18,” Berri told his visitors.
Reforms in the electoral law don’t concern many candidates and officials “as they only desire to occupy the seats of parliament,” Berri said.
In addition, he slammed the March 14 forces’ attempts to exploit the latest developments in Syria for their 2013 parliamentary elections campaigns.
According to An Nahar, Berri didn’t lose hope yet regarding the possibility of adopting an electoral law based on proportional representation.
“The matter is in the hands of the cabinet now,” the speaker said.
Interior Minister Marwan Charbel had proposed recently an electoral law based on proportional representation to be adopted in the 2013 parliamentary polls.
The proposition had sparked controversy among the rival political parties, as Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblat rejected the proposal, while the March 8 forces have voiced their support for it.
The March 14-led opposition has meanwhile maintained its commitment to the amended 1960 law that was adopted during the 2009 parliamentary elections.
On the participation of Lebanese expatriates in the 2013 ballots, Berri voiced his support to the issue.
“I realize the importance of allowing expats to vote,” he noted.
However, he expressed resentment with the officials who are distinguishing between expats based on their political affiliations.
Berri told lawmakers that he supports Foreign Minister Adnan Mansour’s proposal to allocate 10 seats for the expats in parliament.
The cabinet approved on April 25 a mechanism for expats to vote in next year’s parliamentary elections as proposed by Mansour.