BEIRUT: Future Movement MP Ammar Houri Tuesday criticized Free Patriotic Movement Michel Aoun’s popular vote initiative and said his party is working with Hezbollah toward a breakthrough in the yearlong presidential deadlock.
“Hezbollah has placed the [presidential election] card in Iran’s hands and it is benefiting from Gen. Aoun’s stance,” Houri told local news website el-Nashra.
He raised concerns about the ongoing presidential stalemate and said: “We [the Future Movement] through our dialogue with Hezbollah are seeking to persuade [the party] to Lebanonize the election and cooperate with them in order to reach a breakthrough in the crisis.”
Houri said Aoun’s proposal requires a Constitutional amendment “and this cannot be achieved in the absence of head of state.”
Aoun’s “initiative also means changing our political system completely and turning it from a parliamentary system to a presidential system," he added.
Houri said a Future Movement delegation will meet with a FPM delegation Wednesday to hear a briefing on Aoun’s proposal announced last week.
Aoun proposed four options to solve the presidential vacuum:
1- A president could be elected directly by the people in two rounds of voting, first by Christians, and then by all Lebanese.
2- To hold a popular referendum to know who among the presidential candidates enjoys the most support. The winner would then be elected president by Parliament.
3- To allow Parliament to hold an election in which one of two of its most popular Maronite MPs would stand as candidates.
4- A new Parliament is elected based on a new electoral law that is more representative of the people, and then lawmakers would in turn choose a president.