Socialists Reiterate Calls for Election of New Central Election Commission
109 POLITICS - ELECTION COMMISSION - CHANGE - POSITION
Socialists Reiterate Calls
for Election of New
Central Election Commission
Sofia, February 11 (BTA) - The Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) Monday renewed its calls for election of a new Central Election Commission (CEC). The party position was reiterated by its press office after a meeting with the Association of European Journalists - Bulgaria.
The Socialists argue that even though two elections are coming up this year, the law should be observed and a new CEC be elected as the term of the present one expires.
BSP leader Kornelia Ninova said their view is shared by the Association of European Journalists - Bulgaria but they later denied that in a statement saying that the meeting focused on controversial revisions to the Personal Data Protection and that they have never taken and would never take a position on CEC as it goes beyond their central interest: freedom of the press and the media environment.
The Socialists' position, however, is shared by the power-sharing United Patriots coalition of nationalist parties. MP Iskren Vesselinov of the VMRO, one of the United Patriots parties, said on Bulgarian National Radio over the weekend that the law is there to be complied with and a procedure should start for having a new CEC.
The ruling GERB party are adamant that it is not a good idea to replace CEC before the European elections which will be held in Bulgaria on May 26. They also argue that the present CEC members have gained quite a lot of experience and can serve on until after the elections.
As for the controversial revisions to the Personal Data Protection Act, Kornelia Ninova reportedly told the Association of European Journalists that they would support a presidential veto on them and if it is overturned by the rest of the legislature, they would take the matter to the Constitutional Court.
The revisions were vetoed by President Rumen Radev with the motives that they create excessive regulation on the use of personal data, which affects the freedom of expression and right to information. RY/LN/