by Naharnet Newsdesk

12/17/2016

 

March 14 General Secretariat Coordinator Fares Soaid criticized on Friday a Hizbullah statement, which aforesaid that proportional representation in the upcoming elections is an “obligatory path for the state rise”, and said that the country is being shaped according to the terms of Hizbullah.

“The country is taking shape under Hizbullah’s conditions. The party got what it wanted at the presidential level, and it will get what it wants at the governmental level and electoral levels. We might as well hand the whole country to Hizbullah,” Soaid told al-Joumhouria daily.

On Thursday, Hizbullah’s Loyalty to Resistance parliamentary bloc announced that the proportional representation electoral system is an “obligatory path” for change and reform in Lebanon.

“What Hizbullah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah has proposed about endorsing an electoral law fully based on proportional representation in a single electorate or several large electorates is an obligatory path for the rise of a State that can achieve change and reform in the country,” said the bloc after its weekly meeting Thursday.

Soaid, a former MP noted: “The Free Patriotic Movement and other political parties will play along with Hizbullah in that regard. In that case, Lebanon will be formed in accordance with the will of Hizbullah -which will impose its condition on the (parliamentary) elections after it imposed its condition to elect a president- instead of in accordance with the constitution.

“Struggling to lift the Iranian domination off Lebanon is a joint national responsibility,” he emphasized.

Hizbullah has repeatedly called for an electoral law fully based on proportional representation but other political parties, especially al-Mustaqbal Movement, have rejected the proposal and argued that the party’s controversial arsenal of arms would prevent serious competition in regions where the Iran-backed party is influential.

Mustaqbal, the Lebanese Forces and the Progressive Socialist Party have meanwhile proposed a hybrid electoral law that mixes the proportional representation and the winner-takes-all systems. Speaker Nabih Berri has also proposed a hybrid law.

The country has not voted for a parliament since 2009, with the legislature instead twice extending its own mandate.

The 2009 polls were held under an amended version of the 1960 electoral law and the next elections are scheduled for May 2017.