Jordan – Legal reform coalition plans to monitor municipal polls

Legal reform coalition plans to monitor municipal polls
Oct 30, 2011 | 00:00 Updated: Feb 14, 2012 | 12:38
By Mohammad Ghazal

AMMAN – Members of the Coalition to Reform the Legal Framework Governing the Electoral Process on Saturday said they are planning to take part in monitoring the next municipal elections.

The coalition, which includes representatives of civil society organisations, political parties and local committees from across the Kingdom, said it will hold dialogue with civil society entities and decision makers on the Elections Law.

They said they will hold a series of meetings in the country’s 12 governorates to meet with local communities to explain the current elections law and take their notes into account.

The meetings are expected to be held in November or December of this year, members of the coalition said at a meeting, held at the National Centre for Human Rights yesterday.

During the meeting, several members of the press received plaques from the National Centre for Human Rights in recognition of their efforts to highlight the activities of the coalition.

Ad Dustour journalist Omar Maharmeh, who was honoured at the meeting, praised the coalition’s work in helping to bring all of Jordanian society into the national dialogue on the reform process.

“The coalition is the first of its kind that brings together members from all the governorates to come up with a practical formula on how to develop the Elections Law,” he told The Jordan Times yesterday.

The coalition’s recommendations, which included a call for forming an independent committee to oversee elections, were adopted by the National Dialogue Committee and later became part of the recent constitutional amendments that stipulated the creation of such a committee, Maharmeh noted.

The coalition’s recommendations will be referred to Parliament, its members said Saturday.

More than 500 participants from grass-roots organisations, political parties, government and media contributed suggestions, opinions and advice on ways to improve voting and elections in the country, which were compiled and condensed to form the coalition’s 18 recommendations for electoral reform.

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