Dad, political sociologist, local councillor, drummer from Malta

Monday, June 21, 2010

AD protests in Court on discriminatory electoral legislation

Today morning Alternattiva Demokratika – The Green Party presented a judicial protest against the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition, the Speaker of the House and the Attorney General calling on them to end the discrimination inherent in Malta’s electoral law.

Michael Briguglio, AD Chairperson said: ‘No progress has been made as regards electoral reform since the positive proposals of the Gonzi commission back in the 1990s. Such proposals then gave due importance to the need for fair representation of political parties in Parliament and the Gonzi Commission had actually proposed a five per cent threshold of votes on a national basis for representation in the House of Representatives. But these proposals were never put in place. Actually, Malta’s electoral system has been changed in a way that only strengthens the two-party duopoly. To make matters worse, Labour has now decided not to participate in the Parliamentary select committee which discusses electoral reform’.

Through its proposal for a 2.5% national threshold AD is proposing a fair balance between democratic representation of voters and functional governance. We are for true proportional representation for all citizens, where each and every vote counts the same. Unlike the PN and the PL, which work as a duopoly that excludes others from the electoral process, AD is putting forward responsible proposals’.

‘AD’s proposals on electoral reform focus on the need to ensure that the number of votes are reflected proportionately for all political parties with regard to the number of seats and not only for the PL and the PN, as is the situation now. Indeed, in the 2008 election the PN’s relative majority of 1,580 votes has been rewarded with extra parliamentary seats while AD’s 3,810 votes have no parliamentary representation whatsoever. We are for a double threshold, with a retention of the existing district quota of 16.6 per cent that would allow an individual to be elected on her/his own steam for one’s district and a national quota of 2.5% of the votes cast (equivalent to two quotas) for a party to be represented in Parliament. This system would be similar to that of highly-developed democracies. In this regard, it is pertinent to note that all countries in Europe, including micro-states such as San Marino, are represented by more than two parties in Parliament’.

Prof. Arnold Cassola, Spokesperson for EU and International Affairs, stated: ‘Whilst not interfering in internal member electoral systems, the EU is always insisting with non EU countries that they should have fair electoral systems. The same thing is requested of EU candidate countries, like Turkey, whose electoral system with a 10% threshold is not deemed to be fully democratic by the EU. We ask the EU Commission and European Parliament to note the antidemocratic aspects of Maltese electoral law, whereby it is only the two parties in parliament whose votes are translated proportionately into seats in parliament, to the detriment of third parties.’

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Fil-Prim Awla tal-Qorti Civili

Illum 21 ta ‘ Gunju 2010
Lil 1. Onorevoli Prim Ministru, Berga ta Kastilja, Pjazza Ta Kastilja, il-Belt, Valletta
2. Onorevoli Kap tal-Oppozizzjoni, Partit Laburista, Triq Mile End, Hamrun.
3. Speaker Kamra tar-Rapprezentanti, Il-Palazz, il-Belt Valletta.
4. Avukat Generali, Il-Palazz, il-Belt Valletta.

Permezz tal-prezenti ittra ufficjali Michael Briguglio (K.I. 202375 M) f’ismu proprju u fl-isem u l-interess tal-partit politiku Alternattiva Demokratika qed jipremetti:

Illi prezentement is-sistema elettorali Maltija hija wahda li tifavorrixxi biss il-partiti l-kbar u cioe il-Partit Laburista u l-Partit Nazzjonalista, u dana ghax l-Artiklu 52 tal-Kostituzzjoni jipprovdi illi jiskatta mekkanizmu korrettiv fil-konfront ta’ żewġ partiti biex jirristawra l-proporzjonalita’ bejn voti miksuba u membri parlamentari eletti.

Illi dan il-mekkanizmu jiskatta biss meta jkun hemm zewg partiti biss li jkunu eletti, u ma jkoprix il-possibilta li jigi elett/ta membru parlamentari ta partit oltre iz-zewg partiti l-kbar.

Illi dan hu diskriminatorju fil-konfront ta partiti bhal ma hu il-partit mittenti peress li is-sistema taghti vantagg lill-zewg partiti kbar u tpoggi lil partiti ohra fi zvantagg.
Illi l-partit mittenti ilu s-snin shah jilmenta li s-sistema elettorali hi rrangata biex tiffavorixxi liz-zewg partiti l-kbaru fil-fatt fil-passat ha sehem f’diskussjonijiet mal-partiti l-ohra biex tinstab soluzzjoni u meta dawn id-diskussjonijiet waslu fl-ahhar il-partiti l-kbar abbandunaw id-diskussjonijiet bejn tlieta u ftehmu wahedhom
Illi wara l-elezzjoni 2008 twaqqaf Select Committee tal-Parlament b’terms of reference li jinkludu titjib tas-sistema elettorali.

Illi fis-sajf tas-sena 2008 rapprezentanti tal-partit mittenti Alternattiva Demokrattika iltaqa’ ma l-Ispeaker ta dak iz-zmien Onorevoli Louis Galea u ghaddietlu proposti f’dan ir-rigward.
Illi sa s-sena 2010 ma kien hemm l-ebda risposta mill-Ispeaker jew mis-Select Committee u l-partit mittenti rega’ talab li jsiru il-laghat fuq il-ligi elettorali. L-Ispeaker Onorevoli Louis Galea kien stqarr li ghalkemm ma kienx ser ikompli fil-kariga tieghu hu kien gja hejja pjan biex is-sitwazzjoni tkun indirizzata.

Illi ricentement ir-rapprezentanti tal-Partit Laburista iddikjaraw li l-membri tal-partit fis-Select Committee fuq indikata gew irtirati mill-istess Kumitat u dana minhabba tilwima mal-Gvern dwar incidenti fil-Kamra.

Illi dan ifisser li ser nerggha nigu f’sitwazzjoni fejn lejliet l-elezzjoni is-sitwazzjoni diskriminatorja ma tkunx indirizzzata.
Ghaldaqstant, intom qeghdin tigu interpellati sabiex mhux aktar tard minn ghaxart’ t’ijiem minn notifika ta din l-ittra ufficjali tghaddu ghall-emenda u tibdil tal-ligi li hija diskriminatorja fil-konfront tal-partit mittenti. Fin-nuqqas ta’ tali azzjoni rimedjali il-partit mittenti huma sejjer jintavola il-proceduri gudizzjarji opportuni minghajr ebda pre-avviz iehor.

Ghal kull buon fini jigi dikjarat illi din l-ittra ufficjali qeghda tigi inter alia intavolata sabiex isservi l-finijiet ta’ l-Artikolu 460 tal-Kapitolu 12 tal-Ligijiet ta’ Malta.

Avv. Claire Bonello
206/1, Wisely House
Old Bakery Street
Valletta

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