The president of the Electoral Commission, Maximilien Gauvier, has announced today the postponement until further notice of the 2020 electoral cycle in the Northern regions. The decision follows the recommendation of a special parliamentary commission created last march to decide on the future of the administrative regions in the North, which have been subject to intense debate since last year. The commission also confirmed previous reports that the general election in the South, to renew all members of the Parliament, will be pushed back a week in order to allow postal votes from non-resident citizens to be taken in for the first time.
Gauvier stated that the Sabioveronese state is presently unable to organize an election in the Northern regions – Sabia, Verona and Lycem – due to the limited de facto control of Sabia and Verona on said jurisdiction. The statements come as a blow to those who maintain that the status of the Northern regions must remain unchanged, as opposed to the growing number of voices calling the government to revise the current administrative framework in the North.
Controversy has now ensued regarding the legal status of incumbent elected officials in these regions, who were all elected in the last suffrage held in the North five years ago, once their respective terms expire late this year. Legally speaking, it would be unconstitutional to allow the incumbents to remain in office, even in provisional manner, as the 2017 Constitution does not foresee such an arrangement without an electoral way out in the mix. However, as Gauvier pointed out, the government must now find a way to ensure continuity of the rule of law and state authority in the Northern regions or risk having part of Sabia and Verona’s sovereignty compromised.
The Electoral Commission’s decision was praised by supporters of reform in the North, such as education secretary and HG deputy Soraya Hreti, who came under fire from parliamentarians after publishing a scathing opinion piece last November where she called the government and the population to revise the legal structure of the Northern regions and the general view of the post-Haronos balance of powers in Sabia and Verona. According to Hreti, “publicly admitting that the Valtirian state no longer has any sort of control over its population in the North is the first step towards changing our attitude and our constitutional framework in Sabia, Verona and Lycem”.
Ryam Piper, chairperson of the special parliamentary commission on the Northern regions’ status, is expected to hold a conference next week in which a report with the full findings and recommendations of the commission will be made public. The government has already committed to following the commission’s recommendation.