Venice Commission welcomes Serbia’s referendum law, makes recommendations

NEWS 10.11.2021 11:49
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Source: TANJUG/SAVA RADOVANOVIC

The Venice Commission welcome the initiative by the Serbian authorities to adopt a draft law on referendum and people’s initiative but said that it has more recommendations.

“The Venice Commission said that the revised draft law has followed, totally or partially, most of the substantive recommendations of the previous urgent opinion, aimed at ensuring its conformity with international standards. This is a positive development which is welcomed,” a press release said adding that some issues still need to be addressed.

The new recommendations include abolishing or significantly reducing signature authentication fees, extend the right to appeal to all voters, giving election commissions the authority to check signatures, address the decision-making power of the bodies dealing with proposed referendums, complaints and appeals in a more precise way, provide more detailed rules applicable in the case of emergency, consider reasonably extending the deadlines for lodging and deciding on complaints and appeals.

“The Venice Commission therefore recommends holding the next referendum only when the revised law will be “really applicable” to it… Furthermore, the amendments should be adopted by broad consensus and by taking account of the public consultations with all relevant stakeholders,” the Venice Commission said.