Lebanon – Suleiman Expresses Openness to Variations to Proportional Representation System in Electoral Law

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President Michel Suleiman stated on Wednesday his support for the proportional representation system for a new parliamentary electoral law.

He expressed his “openness” to the adoption of an electoral law that combines the winner-takes-all and proportion representation systems.

He made his remarks during a speech before members of various Lebanese consular missions.

“We cannot devise a law other than proportional representation that is better suited for Lebanon,” he added.

The president noted however that he is open to discussions over altering a draft law based on proportional representation in a hope that in the future a law based strictly on this system would be adopted.

“Proportional representation is important in that it eliminates unilateral approaches by sects and instead creates diversity among them,” explained Suleiman.

“Other proposed electoral laws do not offer such an outcome, but they create diversity among certain sects,” he said.

“Lebanon is built on diversity and it is very hard for the older generations to grow accustomed to ideas they are not familiar with,” he stated.

Discussion over a new electoral law have been taken place at an electoral subcommittee that resumed its meetings last week.

Its next session is set for Monday.

Until that date, the various political powers have been tasked with studying a draft law proposal based on the winner-takes-all and proportional representation systems.

A Christian four-party committee, comprised of the Phalange Party, Marada Movement, Free Patriotic Movement, and Lebanese Forces, had advocated the adoption of the Orthodox Gathering proposal for the parliamentary elections, but Suleiman had rejected the suggestion.

 


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