English | Dzongkha Saturday, July 21, 2018

NA decides not to amend Election Act of 2008

Nov 24, 2014

NA_ElectionAct- Even though most of the Members of the Opposition feel the Election Act of Bhutan 2008 needs to be amended, the National Assembly, today, decided not to amend the act.

The National Assembly had sought consultations on the Election Act from as many as 10 dzongkhags. Even the political parties outside the parliament had submitted their recommendations.

During the consultations, about 16 issues pertinent related to elections had come up. The issues included political parties to reserve a minimum of 30 percent seats for women and candidate migration from one party to another, after primary polls.

Bardo-Trong MP, Lekey Dorji added that some of the issues could be included in rules and regulations of Elections.

Some of those who disagreed said Bhutan had no experience in democracy when the act was first drafted. They said the act was drafted and endorsed after studying similar acts of other countries. But now, it is fine to amend the act since the country has already experienced elections.

But others believe the election act was drafted by experienced and capable intellects and was thoroughly discussed in the first parliament.

They said there is no need to amend the act at this juncture.

A few of the MPs also said there is no mechanism in place to restrict campaign, 48 hours prior to poll day.

After a lengthy debate, the house resorted to voting to finalise the matter. Of the total 43 members present in the house, 13 voted for amendment and 27 against. Three abstained.

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