BEIRUT: President Michel Sleiman and Kataeb leader Amin Gemayel discussed Friday the controversial issue of electoral law after the approval of the Orthodox Gathering’s proposal this week sparked criticism in the country, a statement from the president’ press office said.
According to the statement, the president reiterated his call for a constitutional electoral law that ensures fair representation for all Lebanese groups.
The statement also said that Gemayel briefed the president on Thursday’s Maronite leaders meeting in Bkirki “in a bid to find an electoral law that would satisfy the majority of Lebanese.”
Following the meeting chaired by Patriarch Beshara Rai, rival Maronite leaders said they were open to any proposal that ensured true political representation for Christians.
The meeting was called by the patriarch in an attempt to ease tension recently stirred by the joint parliamentary committees’ approval of the Orthodox proposal.
The proposal, which is backed by the country’s four major Christian parties, Amal and Hezbollah, is in return rejected by the president, Prime Minister Najib Mikati, the Future Movement, Progressive Socialist Party and independent Christian politicians.
The Orthodox law projects Lebanon as one district based on proportional representation and allows each sect to elect its own lawmakers.
Those opposing the Orthodox law argue that it would lead to further sectarian divisions in the country.
The president has repeatedly labeled the Orthodox bid as “unconstitutional” and said that he will challenge such a law if it is approved by Parliament.