President Opposes Changes to Constitution Skip to content

President Opposes Changes to Constitution

President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, who was re-elected for a record fifth four-year term on Saturday, argues against the Constitutional Council’s proposal for the adoption of a new constitution.


Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.

The proposal is subject to an advisory national referendum, as agreed in a vote at Alþingi, the Icelandic parliament, in May. According to the agreement, the referendum is to take place no later than October 20, 2012.

Ólafur Ragnar says that changing the constitution requires wide political support, as opposed to the current disunity surrounding the proposed changes advised by the Constitutional Council, reports.

The proposed changes to the constitution were to serve as guidance to the government. At the parliamentary vote in May, 35 voted in favor and 15 against.

A series of complaints and criticism concerning the parliament’s methodology in the matter were heard. Those who most strongly opposed the referendum were MPs from the opposition’s Independence and Progressive parties, who reasoned that substantial debate about the draft had not taken place and that solidarity on how to proceed was lacking.

It was initially suggested that a referendum on the new constitution could take place alongside the presidential election, which was held on June 30. However, the proposal was not accepted and other options were discussed.

Click here to read more about the referendum on the Constitutional Council’s proposal for the adoption of a new constitution.


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