Senate greenlights referendum package
PR dla Zagranicy
Following a motion put forward by President Bronisław Komorowski last week, Poland’s Senate has approved a national referendum package on three issues, including single-mandate constituencies.
The Senate debates the possible referendum on 20.05.2015 Photo: PAP/Tomasz Gzell
Apart from single-mandate constituencies, the referendum is also to ask Poles on the financing of political parties from the state budget as well as a change to the tax law.
The move by Komorowski to moot a referendum on single-mandate constituencies comes after the first round of the presidential election on 10 May, in which rival Paweł Kukiz garnered one fifth of the vote with the single-mandate issue top of his priorities.
A total of 57 senators voted in favour of the referendum, with all members of the opposition Law and Justice in the Polish upper parliamentary house boycotting the vote bar one – Mieczysław Gil – who claims he voted by accident.
The referendum is billed for 6 September, in the run-up to the general election later in the autumn. If more than 50 percent of Poles elegible to vote in the referendum do so, then it will be binding.
Voting on the referendum took place after a 10-hour debate, during which members of Law and Justice argued that the referendum would be unconstitutional.
The cost of the referendum is estimated to amount to PLN 100 million. (jb)