Jumblat: Adopting Proportional Representation in Electoral Law Will Reproduce Period of Hegemony
Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblat questioned on Monday the insistence to adopt proportional representation in the parliamentary electoral law.
He noted in his weekly editorial in the PSP-affiliated al-Anbaa magazine: “Such a law will, in one way or another, help reproduce the era of hegemony in Lebanon, which will therefore be rejected by all the Lebanese people.”
“The period of hegemony was rife with political assassinations against national, media, and intellectual figures,” he continued.
He added that a proportional representation law will help create a parliament that will be loyal to a foreign “axis that claims to support defiance against Israel and that is on its way to be eliminated.”
Such a parliament will also help elect a president who does not enjoy consensus, remarked the Druze chief.
“Any attempt to restore the era of hegemony will be met with rejection because the Lebanese people refuse to turn back the hands of time, especially when Arab peoples are in revolt against oppressive and dictatorial regimes,” said Jumblat.
Furthermore, the MP added that he was the first to propose proportional representation three decades ago, “before the formation of the current political powers.”
He explained that he had made the suggestion at the time as part of a complete package that would help achieve “real reform in the country’s political system.”
The current proposal of proportional representation is only aimed at “silencing the other,” he stressed.
“Has it become so unbearable for them to tolerate the centrist voices that are seeking to prevent the country from heading towards strife?” asked Jumblat.
“Weren’t centrists the ones who affirmed political principles that called for protecting the resistance’s arms?” he wondered.
“Weren’t they part of the national consensus over the Special Tribunal for Lebanon during the 2006 national dialogue?” he continued.
“If only some powers in the majority and others in the minority would exercise humility in order to reasonably tackle issues instead of getting embroiled in daily disputes that don’t even spare the president, who is burdened by the fact that he was elected through consensus instead of being provided with the suitable conditions to be elected,” he remarked.
The PSP leader questioned the campaign against President Michel Suleiman, which he said may be linked to his refusal to hand over Syrian refugees to their country, “where they will be surely executed.”
He also speculated that the campaign may be aimed at preventing the president from expressing his views on the administrative and judicial appointments.
Disputes have recently emerged between Suleiman and Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun over the appointments of civil servants and a $5.9 billion extra-budgetary spending bill, which the president is being pressured to sign.
The March 8 camp has advocated the adoption of proportional representation for the electoral law, while Jumblat has said that such a law is aimed at limiting his political weight.