Report: Al-Mustaqbal Initiative Based on 1960 Law and Orthodox Proposal for Senate

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Al-Mustaqbal bloc is set to announce on Tuesday a proposal to hold this year's parliamentary polls based on the 1960 law with some amendments and establishing a senate through the so-called Orthodox Gathering proposal, al-Akhbar daily reported.

The newspaper said the proposal will be made following the bloc's weekly meeting under the chairmanship of former Prime Minister Fouad Saniora.

Saniora announced on Sunday that his bloc will soon propose a “comprehensive” draft-law that appeases all factions, mainly Christians.

The 1960 law, which adopts the qada as an electoral district and is based on a winner-takes-all-system, was used in the 2009 parliamentary elections after partial amendments.

Al-Mustaqbal has totally rejected the Orthodox proposal which calls for a single district and allows each sect to vote for its own MPs under a proportional representation system.

Saniora met with President Michel Suleiman at Baabda palace on Monday.

His sources told An Nahar and As Safir dailies that he briefed the president on its initiative which Hariri will announce on Thursday unlike the al-Akhbar report that said the announcement will be made Tuesday.

They said Saniora reiterated his rejection of the Orthodox proposal which “leads to the destruction of Lebanon,” saying al-Mustaqbal will not approve it even if the rest of the blocs gave their go-ahead.

The former premier informed Suleiman that al-Mustaqbal movement will continue to defend Lebanon's unity and its coexistence and made it clear that the bloc will boycott a joint parliamentary committees meeting scheduled to be held on Wednesday to discuss electoral draft-laws.

The March 14 alliance announced in October its boycott of all government-related activity after it blamed the cabinet for the assassination of Internal Security Forces Intelligence Branch chief Wissam al-Hassan.

But al-Mustaqbal's March 14 allies, the Phalange and the Lebanese Forces, said they will attend Wednesday's meeting out of their keenness to agree with the rest of factions on a law that would govern the polls.

Comments 10
Default-user-icon + oua nabka + (Guest) 29 January 2013, 10:57

oua nabka oua sanabka ghass 3an lekbir
no electoral law without the rightfull representation of christians
fhamo ya 3arab

Missing rafehh 29 January 2013, 18:20

Oh come on here. This senseless entitlement must end. If you want to talk about rightful, then one person, one vote. You are not somehow better than your muslim lebanese and vice versa. If what is written in this article is true, then it is the closest to the Taef and the constitution. What amazes me is why do our politicians not apply the Taef and the constitution? A senate guaranteeing minimum representation per sect and a non-sectarian based on qada'a or smaller.

Missing rafehh 29 January 2013, 18:21

And non-sectarian parliament based on qada'a or smaller

Default-user-icon majdak Lubnan (Guest) 29 January 2013, 13:17

After 23 years enough of the Mustahbal. Ma sheb3ou hal bda3a. Ya Saniora your one way ticket is getting closer. Sade2ni ya habibe 2enou 7en el wa2et. Khalas shbe3na men hayk mafia yali sara2ou aktar men ma sara2ou el Souriyoun.

Thumb beiruti 29 January 2013, 16:22

This, of course is the proper solution to the dilemma of fair representation for demographic majorities but institutional protection for demographic minorities. The solution cannot be worked in a unicameral legislative body. Rather expression of demographic majority rule can be accomplished in the Chamber of Deputies and institutional protection for the rights of demographic minorities can be protected in a Senate chamber.
Even the United States, at its founding during the crisis of the Constitutional Convention found this solution the only answer. Representatives of small states did not wish to join with the larger states because they would always be at an electoral disadvantage in a proportionally represented national legislature.

Thumb beiruti 29 January 2013, 16:23

James Madison developed the Grand Compromise that each state, regardless of size would be accorded 2 senators in a separate legislative chamber. So, tiny Vermont has 1 Representative and the larger New York has 27. But in the Senate, Vermont has 2 Senators and New York has 2 Senators.
In Lebanon, the Chamber should not be apportioned by confessional group, rather anyone should be free to run for any of the 128 seats so that the Majority may find expression in the Chamber of Deputies.
In the Lebanese Senate, the Taif formula of 50-50 split between Christians and Moslems should be preserved and institutionalized as a guarantee to the confessional minorities.

Missing rafehh 29 January 2013, 18:08

Agreed and that is what the Taef is all about.

Missing rafehh 29 January 2013, 18:10

Habibi - what kind of logic is that? Please deal with substance of proposal. If anyone takes the same approach as you, then no point discussing anything as almost everyone here has an intense dislike toward a certain party - and using almost the same verbiage you are.

Missing rafehh 29 January 2013, 18:22

And hard for hizb to understand that it must relinquish its hold on Lebanon and return the war and peace decision to the lebanese people and state.

Missing peace 29 January 2013, 23:40

"and establishing a senate " LOL!!! as if we needed more incompetent people to be paid by citizens! lebanon is so small it doesn t need a senate!
more salaries to be paid and of course all the privileges that goes along when they whine to increase the citizens salaries!

stupidest politicians ever!