Opposition to File Suit against Jordanian Gov't over Elections Law

Published September 13th, 2001 - 02:00 GMT

Opposition parties in Jordan have decided to take the government to court for passing a temporary elections law two months ago, political activists said on Wednesday.  

“We have decided to file suit before the Higher Court of Justice by Thursday morning,” Salem Nahhas, secretary general of the Jordanian People's Democratic Party (HASHD), was quoted as saying by the Jordan Times newspaper.  

Nahhas is a member of the higher committee, which groups representatives of 17 opposition parties all over the political spectrum.  

Opponents of temporary laws issued by the government have the right to contest the law at the Higher Court of Justice within 60 days of the enactment of the legislation.  

Fuad Dabbour, another member of the Higher Committee, told the paper that the opposition parties and individuals were keen to contest the elections law.  

Imad Armouti, a lawyer, said the parties' argument is based on the fact that there was “no emergency circumstance” warranting the enactment of a temporary law on elections.  

“And the parties will contest this fact before the Higher Court of Justice,” added Armouti.  

Over the past two months, the government has issued at least ten temporary laws on elections, the State Security Court, education and other domains.  

The constitution allows the executive branch to issue temporary laws in the absence of Parliament, in recess since June, on condition of “emergency cases.”  

Parliament must debate, endorse or reject the laws once it reconvenes.  

Meanwhile, the paper said that the Jordan Bar Association plans to sue the government early next week over the amendment to the public gathering law which was passed last month.  

The association, according to its speaker Saleh Armouti, will use the same argument in the Higher Court of Justice.  

Last July, the government introduced an amended draft elections law maintaining the controversial one-man, one-vote formula, opposed by the opposition parties who are led by Islamists – Albawaba.com 


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