Parliament Speaker: Election law referendum to weaken system

NEWS 07.05.2018 16:48
Source: N1

The main intention of the initiative to change the election law through a referendum is to weaken the political system, said the Parliament Speaker, Gordan Jandrokovic, on Monday.

“It seems to me the main intention is to weaken the political and party system that we have now. It has its weaknesses, of course, it is far from ideal, but that does not mean every change is good. There are changes which can shake up that which is already good,” Jandrokovic said, speaking to the press in the parliament.

A civil initiative called The People Decide (Narod odlučuje) announced they would collect signatures for two weeks, starting May 13, for a referendum to change the election law. In order for the referendum to take place, they need to collect signatures from some 380,000 people, or a 10 percent of the electorate in Croatia. If they are successful, the Constitutional Court will decide whether the questions in the proposed referendum are in line with the Croatian Constitution, and allow, or veto, the referendum.

The initiative is asking for a reduction in the number of MPs from the existing 150 to a maximum of 120, a 4 percent election threshold compared to the current 5 percent, a restriction in minority MPs voting rights, and an increase in preferential voting on party slates from one to three votes.

Their goal, they say, is to ensure greater voter decision making in the election if their MPs, greater voter participation in elections, and reduce political bargaining and corruption.

“I think the erosion of political parties leads to nothing good. I think the strengthening of the system, (voter) education and the democratisation of parties are a better path than highlighting only those individuals who, mostly through social networks and mass media, will draw attention to themselves,” Jandrokovic said.