Avoid a constant political campaign

By the end of the year, local elections will be held in Herceg Novi, which are already scheduled for May 9, and then in Mojkovac, Cetinje and Petnjica.

EU seeks changes to ease tensions: Picula with former Prime Minister Dusko Markovic and former head of the EU Delegation to Montenegro Aiva Orava (archive), Photo: Bojana Cupic

Although the parties generally support the proposal to hold local elections in one day, it is almost certain that this will not happen this year either, given that the parliamentary Committee for Comprehensive Electoral Reform of Electoral Legislation, which should deal with this issue, has not yet formed.

The assembly should elect the members of that assembly body at the end of the month, “Vijesti” was told.

One-day local elections in order to avoid a constant political campaign and alleviate the tense political climate in Montenegro, is one of the amendments to the Draft Report on Montenegro by the European Parliament (EP) rapporteur Tonin Picula.

Also an old recommendation of the European Commission while the head of the EU Delegation in Podgorica was Aivo Orav, but also of ODIHIR.

By the end of the year, local elections will be held in Herceg Novi, which are already scheduled for May 9, and then in Mojkovac, Cetinje and Petnjica.

The Parliament adopted the Draft Decision on the Establishment of the Committee for Comprehensive Electoral Reform, which, among other things, envisages the definition of the draft Law on the Election of Councilors and Deputies.

It stipulates that the Committee will complete its work by June, and how many local elections in one day would it accept as a solution, the Law on Election of Councilors and Deputies would be changed, whose voting in the Assembly requires a two-thirds majority of 54 deputies – ie consensus of government and opposition .

The executive director of the Civic Alliance (GA), Boris Raonic, told “Vijesti” that he understands the practical purpose of the idea of ​​simultaneous elections, because it prevents too much focus of powerful party machines on small municipalities, as well as unnecessary spending of resources.

“However, the implementation of this idea requires a two-thirds majority of MPs, an answer to the dilemma of what happens in the event of the dissolution of the Municipal Assembly, as well as fears whether local issues will be put in the background than those in the mandate of national authorities.” said Raonic.

He pointed out that this issue should be approached very carefully, with an analysis of all the mentioned aspects.

The international community is increasingly suggesting to Montenegro that it would be good to hold local elections in one day.

During a meeting with Parliament Vice President Strahinja Bulajic in early March, the head of the EU Delegation to Montenegro, Oana Kristina Popa, pointed out that, for a stronger focus on the necessary reform processes, it would be advisable to consider holding all local elections in one day.

The President of the Assembly, Aleksa Bečić, repeated several times that he is in favor of that solution, assessing that it is a precondition for the state not to be in an extraordinary political election state for years.