Lebanon News

Presidential decree calls on Parliament to open legislative round

MPs gather at Parliament to attend a presidential election session in Beirut, Thursday, May 22, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)

BEIRUT: Parliament’s General Secretariat Tuesday received a presidential decree signed by former President Michel Sleiman, calling on the legislative branch to hold an extraordinary round of sessions for a little over four months.

Sleiman announced he would sign such a decree before the end of his six-year term on May 25, arguing that the move would force Parliament to discuss and approve a new electoral law before the parliamentary elections scheduled in November.

The decree, No. 11996, calls on Parliament to open a round of legislation starting June 2, 2014, and running to Oct. 20, 2014, to study state budgets referred from previous Cabinets and future ones as well as outstanding draft laws and potential future ones.

It also stipulates that Parliament will discuss other draft laws that the branch deems necessary.

In his farewell speech, Sleiman said that he would sign a decree that calls on Parliament to hold an extraordinary session to address a new draft law for the parliamentary elections set for November and the controversial salary scale draft law.

“I will sign today a decree to call on Parliament to hold an exceptional session as the country is facing parliamentary elections, which requires setting a new electoral law,” Sleiman said. “The general situation might also witness urgent issues, and our political system requires Parliament to hold a session to question the Cabinet."

Lawmakers struggled last year to approve a new electoral law for the parliamentary elections that were scheduled for May. The failure to agree on an election law prompted the MPs to extend their own mandate for an additional 17 months.





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