Political Blocs to Submit Candidacies According to 1960 Law to Avoid Uncontested Victoriesإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Parliamentary elections candidates from the rival March 8 and 14 camps announced on Saturday that they would be willing to submit their candidacies based on the 1960 electoral law, reported various media outlets.
According to LBCI television, March 14 Lebanese Forces MP George Adwan said: “The LF, Mustaqbal, and independent candidates will submit their candidacies based on the 1960 law to prevent uncontested victories.”
Mustaqbal MP Jamal al-Jarrah echoed this position to Future television, saying that he will submit his candidacy on Monday.
“This is a technical procedure, not a political maneuver,” he explained.
MP Alain Aoun, of the Free Patriotic Movement of the rival March 8 alliance, was quoted as saying: “If an agreement over the parliamentary electoral law is not reached, then we will submit candidacies based on the 1960 law.”
The lawmakers made their remarks ahead of an electoral subcommittee meeting at parliament aimed at reaching an agreement over a new vote law.
According to An Nahar daily Saturday, caretaker Interior Minister Marwan Charbel explained that given that the political blocs have so far failed in reaching an agreement over a new vote law, the one that was adopted during the previous elections, the 1960 law, would still be active and candidates would be eligible to submit their candidacies based on it.
He added that preparations to stage the elections, which are scheduled for June 16, are underway according to the previous law.
An amended version of the 1960 law was adopted in the 2009 parliamentary elections, but the majority of the political blocs are refusing to adopt it for this year's polls.
The Orthodox Gathering law has meanwhile been rejected by President Michel Suleiman, caretaker Prime Minister Najib Miqati, the Mustaqbal bloc, MP Walid Jumblat's National Struggle Front, and independent Christian March 14 MPs.
The Orthodox draft law, which considers Lebanon a single electoral district and allows each sect to vote for its own MPs under a proportional representation system, is strongly backed by Hizbullah and the FPM.
The proposal's opponents have said that it deepens sectarian divides in Lebanon.
The failure to reach an agreement over a new electoral law is threatening to postpone the elections amid increased reports that the current parliament's term may be extended.
In April, National Struggle Front members led by Jumblat submitted to the Interior Ministry their candidacies for the parliamentary elections based on the 1960 law that considers the qada an electoral district and is based on the winner-takes-all system.
The delegate of Jumblat's Progressive Socialist Party, who submitted the candidacies, told reporters outside the Interior Ministry at the time that the move was in harmony with the stance of Suleiman on avoiding a vacuum in the absence of a new electoral law.