Suleiman: Proportionality Offers Fair Representation, 1960 Law Didn't Achieve National Purposeإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
President Michel Suleiman called on Saturday for the adoption of a parliamentary electoral law that “produces diversity among all sects” in Lebanon.
He said before his visitors: “Proportional representation will achieve fair representation among these sects.”
Moreover, he noted that the amended 1960 law that was adopted during the 2009 elections failed to “accomplish its national purpose.”
“The failure of the 1960 law does not justify the support for laws that produce sectarian blocs in Lebanon,” Suleiman said in reference to the Orthodox Gathering proposal, which he noted stokes sectarianism in the country.
He therefore suggested that amendments be introduced to the draft law based on proportional representation given that some political factions had voiced their rejection to it.
“These amendments could include combining the winner-takes-all and proportional representation systems,” the president added.
“This will help pave the way for the establishment of a senate in Lebanon and eventually the adoption of the proportional representation system in future electoral laws,” Suleiman stated.
The Orthodox Gathering law calls for each sect to elect its own representative at parliament.
It was advocated by the March 8 camp's Marada Movement and Free Patriotic Movement and the March 14 camp's Lebanese Forces and Phalange Party.
Prime Minister Najib Miqati and various other officials voiced their rejection of the law, saying that it fuels sectarianism in Lebanon.
The government approved in August an electoral draft law based on proportional representation and 13 districts.
It was rejected by Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblat and the March 14 camp, which deemed it as being tailored to the March 8 camp's interests.
Given the ongoing dispute over the electoral law, the parliamentary subcommittee had been holding meetings over the past two weeks to study various proposals, including the Orthodox law and hybrid law.
Suleiman held separate talks on Saturday with Foreign Minister Adnan Mansour and the head of the Lebanese-Syrian Higher Council Nasri Khoury.