Senators debate president's referendum proposal
PR dla Zagranicy
Senators were on Wednesday expected to debate a proposal by Poland’s president to hold a referendum later this year about possible changes to the country’s constitution.
Der Senat der Republik Polen Kancelaria Senatu Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej
President Andrzej Duda hails from Poland’s ruling conservative Law and Justice party, but senior party figures have previously suggested they were against his proposal to hold a referendum on November 10 and 11, when Poland marks the centenary of its independence.
Last Friday, President Andrzej Duda said the referendum would aim to gauge if Poles want to keep their constitution, which dates back to 1997, change it, or have a new one.
He also wanted to ask whether Poles want the retirement age, family handouts, and Poland's place in NATO and the European Union to be constitutionally guaranteed.
Voters would also be asked if the president should have more powers and if the constitution should refer to Poland's Christian values and heritage.
The result of a referendum would not dictate the future of the constitution but rather act as an indication of changes Poles want to see.
The Senate, the upper house of Polish parliament, was previously expected to debate the issue on Tuesday.
Poland marks its centenary of independence on November 11.
On 11 November, 1918, Polish statesman Józef Piłsudski arrived in Warsaw after being held prisoner in Germany during World War I, announcing Polish independence on the same day that the armistice to end the Great War was signed, paving the way for Poland to return to the map of Europe after more than 120 years of partitions and foreign rule. (vb/pk)