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Tigray amends constitution

To increase number of council seats 190

The Council of the Tigray Regional State, which conducted its 9th emergency meeting on Thursday August 6, 2020 has amended Article 42, Sub Article 2 of the constitution which deals with the electoral system of the region, subsequently, according to the amendment, the electoral system has shifted to a mixed electoral system from the majority vote electoral system.

It can be recalled that the Council of the Tigray Regional State, has approved the appointments of officials for Tigray Regional State Election Commission, as part of a move to push ahead with regional election that put the region at loggerheads with the federal government.

The recent amendment, therefore, would shift the electoral system from the existing majority vote to the new hybrid one that is mixed electoral system. Accordingly, while 80 percent of the seat is allotted to the existing majority vote system the remaining 20 percent would be allotted to the new system, which is a mixed one.

To this effect, the number of seats at the regional council would increase from its current 152 seats to 190 seats where the parties in the region will vie for majority vote and mixed one subsequently.

The newly-established regional electoral commission headed by Muluwork Gebrekidan has announced last week that some five political parties and 11 individuals have registered to take part in the regional election, while Arena Tigray, and, Tigray Democratic Party, are boycotting the regional election by saying it is not going to be free and fair.

Discussion on changing the electoral system of the country had been on the table since 2017 and some 15 opposition political parties and the ruling party had agreed to shift the electoral system of the country in to mixed where 80 percent of the seat of the parliament allotted to 20 percent goes to the mixed electoral system, however the change in leadership with the then ruling party the Ethiopian Peoples Revolutionary Democratic Party (EPRDF) halted the outcome.

Accordingly, the House of People’s Representatives (HPR) was expected to have an additional 110 seats on top of the existing 547 seats.