Two Referendums Might be Held in Bulgaria Simultaneously with Presidential Elections

Domestic | May 13, 2016, Friday // 10:10|  views

Parliament Speaker Tsetska Tsacheva, Photo: BGNES

There is a possibility that two referendums might be held simultaneously with the forthcoming presidential elections in Bulgaria in the autumn.

This was stated by Parliament Speaker Tsetska Tsacheva in an interview for private NOVA TV on Friday.

On Thursday, the parliament approved the holding of a six-point referendum on the political system, initiated by popular TV host Slavi Trifonov.

It is still to be seen whether the five-point referendum proposed by businessman Veselin Mareshki will take place as it is unclear whether he has collected the required number of signatures.

The petition for the two referendums was initiated almost simultaneously. In addition, the referendums have one question in common and another one that is almost the same.

The referendum initiated by Trifonov proposes the introduction of two-round majority electoral system, electronic voting, compulsory voting, cutting the number of MPs in half from 240 to 120, reducing the state subsidy paid to parties and coalitions to BGN 1 per voter and the direct election of the directors of the regional directorates of the interior ministry and the heads of district police departments.

The one initiated by Mareshki proposes regulation of the fuel market to guarantee cheaper prices at petrol stations, lifting the immunity from criminal prosecution of MPs, abolishing the state subsidy paid to parties, lifting the restriction not allowing a person to open more than four pharmacies on the territory of the country.

Both Trifonov and Mareshki had three months to collect at least 400 000 signatures in favour of the referendums proposed by them, which is the minimum threshold required for the holding of a referendum initiated by citizens.

A check of competent authorities established that 572 650 out of the 673 481 signatures collected by Trifonov were valid.

Mareshki had to collect additional signatures as a check by authorities established that out of the more than 400 000 signatures submitted initially, only 310 078 were valid. The businessman submitted another 100 000 last week.

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Tags: Bulgaria, Referendum, elections, Slavi Trifonov, Veselin Mareshki, compulsory voting, electronic voting, subsidy, Tsetska Tsacheva


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