Suriname’s National Assembly organises three-day discussion on electoral system
PARAMARIBO, Suriname (CMC) – Chairman of Suriname’s National Assembly, Marinus Bee, says the three-day Academic Week beginning on Monday provides an opportunity to discuss proposals aimed at making changes to the electoral system.
Various experts and institutes in charge of organising the elections will also contribute during the Academic Week, which will be held for the second time by the National Assembly.
Bee said that the participants from government and non-government organisations will discuss various proposals for changing the Electoral Regulations and the electoral system.
He said the aim is to reach consensus on a proposal that would have the support of 34 legislators or two-thirds majority as required in the National Assembly to change the Election Rules.
He said the parties must make every effort to avoid a stalemate.
“This is important so as not to pass a law that we cannot pass in the National Assembly,” Bee said.
Meanwhile, the organisers of last month’s protest action that resulted in a draft Electoral Act, written by attorney Jennifer Van Dijk-Silos, being presented to Bee, say they have decided to postpone any further action until after Easter week.
The activists had warned that while the legislative body may tinker with the design, the “essence” must remain and that if the National Assembly does not meet the one week requirement, different action will be taken. The ultimatum expired on March 31.
One of the organisers, Maisha Neus, told reporters that “Silent Week” has been postponed because “experience has taught us that Surinamers reflect and do not want to protest. So out of respect for the religious expression of a large part of society, we have decided this”.