New local government draft laws go to vote on 18 March

Luanda – The draft law on the Status of the Holders of Local Authorities Posts, the General Regime of Inter-municipal Cooperation and Special Law on Justifying Deaths of Victims of Political Conflicts will go to discussion and voting in general terms, at the ordinary plenary meeting of the National Assembly (parliament) on the 18th of this month.

The information was released last Thursday, in Luanda, by the National Assembly’ spokesman, Raúl Lima, in the end of a parliamentary whips’ conference, which defined the agenda for the 6th ordinary plenary meeting of this sovereign body.

The first two local governments draft laws, a legislative initiative of the Executive, are part of a set of four diplomas, which recently entered the National Assembly.

The plenary session agenda for the 18th also includes the final global vote on the draft law on the Transfer of Duties and Competences from the central government to the local governments.

The most fracturing draft of this election package is the institutionalization of local governments specially the gradual implementation issue whose discussion has been scheduled for the end.

However, Liberty Chiaka, the UNITA parliamentary whip, understands that the country will not have municipal elections if there is no global final vote on the Draft Law on the Institutionalization of Local Governments.

“We want to express our readiness to agree on fracturing matters with MPLA as it has a majority in the Chamber and directs the commissions responsible for scheduling it”, observed the main opposition party deputy.

According to the deputy, the process does not progress due to the lack of MPLA’s political and patriotic will.

“We cannot remain with the uncertainty, the country made a commitment to carry out municipal elections in 2020, but the institutional calendar is undefined”.

Liberty Chiaka said that he believes that if there is a will, especially courage to end the barrier, this bill (Institutionalization of Local Governments) may be approved in April, which he considers essential for the holding of municipal elections in the country.

“One should not condition the national will to hold municipal elections in all municipalities for the harmonious development of the country,” he said.

On his turn, the ruling MPLA parliamentary whip, Américo Cunonoca, pointed that blaming his party for the delay in scheduling fracturing topics is a false argument, as the National Assembly is composed of several parliamentary groups.

Américo Cunonoca said that the draft law is being prepared well and with caution, so that it can be approved unanimously.

“We’ll approve this bill, always taking into account the compromise, consensus and permanent dialogue”, stressed the ruling party’s deputy.

According to him, in order to have regulatory instruments that will be part of this new electoral laws package, it is necessary to have secure laws, so that tomorrow the country does not regret it.

The MPLA deputy stressed that, in addition to the municipal package, the country has other priorities, which cannot be postponed, such as economic and social issues.

Meanwhile, within the scope of the Municipal Legislative Package, eight legal diplomas have already been definitively approved.

Six legal tools are still to be approved, and so the deputies will have the mission to complete the legislative package in the current parliamentary year to create the essential material conditions for the holding of the country’s first local elections.

The most fracturing draft of this election package is the institutionalization of local governments (the gradual implementation issue).

The ruling MPLA party deputies defend that any deep reform must be gradual and carried out with prudence.

Therefore, they also disagree with the idea that the recent entry of new draft laws in parliament is to delay the holding of municipal elections in Angola, scheduled for this year.

Source: Angola Press News Agency