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Duma to have parliamentary hearings on direct gubernatorial polls

April 09, 2012, 7:59 UTC+3

All participants in the debates support the idea of transition to direct gubernatorial elections

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MOSCOW, April 9 (Itar-Tass) —— The parliamentary hearings entitled “The elections of chief executives in Russian federal constituents: constitutional grounds and peculiarities of legislative regulation” will be held in the State Duma on Monday. Deputies and senators, officials from the Russian presidential staff, specific ministries and agencies will participate in the parliamentary hearings.

The hearings will be held as part of the drafting of a presidential bill on direct gubernatorial elections for the second reading, Chairman of the State Duma Committee for Constitutional Legislation and State Construction Vladimir Pligin said. “The deadline for amendments is extended until April 15 in order to take into account all constructive idea,” he told reporters.

The deputy noted that all amendments submitted in the committee are divided in 18 trends that concern the number of possible terms for governors, the participation of the parties in consultations with the Russian president on the nomination of their candidates for governor, the rules to dismiss the governor from the post. Pligin also noted that “all participants in the debates support the idea of transition to direct gubernatorial elections, considering this as a very important trend for the democratic development in the country.”

Representatives of the State Duma opposition dwelt more concretely on the amendments. The A Just Russia faction offers to introduce a two-round system of gubernatorial elections and restrict their tenure with two terms by five years each, and the Communist faction calls for the cancellation of the presidential filter.

The State Duma approved the first reading of the bill on February 28. According to the bill, the chief executive in the federal constituent is elected in a secret ballot on the basis of the universal, equal and direct suffrage. The candidates for governor are nominated by political parties or are self-nominated. The nomination of candidates by the political parties can be made after the consultations with the Russian president, who determines the procedure of them. Meanwhile, the parties do not need to collect signatures in support of their nominees. The bill envisages the maximum term of no more than five years for the governor. The bill also envisages a possible dismissal of the governor in case of his violations of Russian legislation or the failure to perform his duties without well-grounded reasons for many times, but these accusations should be proved in the court. The governor can be dismissed by the president over the loss of trust due to corruption cases committed by the governor.

Vladimir Pligin pledged that the State Duma will approve the bill on gubernatorial elections in April. According to the lawmaking plan, the bill can be debated in the second reading on April 24.


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