NA Standing Committee sets date for national polls
HA NOI — A majority of members of the National Assembly Standing Committee have reached a consensus on a date for national polls to be held to establish the election council and the election sub-committee for the 13th National Assembly and for People's Councils at all levels for the 2011-16 term.
They voted after hearing a National Assembly Committee on Deputies' Affairs report on the issue at a session of the NA Standing Committee in Ha Noi yesterday.
Head of the NA Deputies' Affairs Committee Pham Minh Tuyen announced that elections for the 2011-2016 term would be held on May 22 of this year.
As planned, the NA Standing Committee will promulgate a resolution of the date for the national polls on January 21.
The election council will comprise 21 people including the NA chairman who will be the council president. It will also include deputy chairmen from the Office of the President, the Government Office, the National Assembly, committees, organisations and central associations.
The establishment of the election sub-committee is aimed at assisting the election council in organising national polls.
The sub-committee is anticipated to comprise 39 people. It will be divided into three groups with one in charge of settling complaints and petitions relevant to the election, another for disseminating information about the election, and the last for security purposes.
NA Chairman Nguyen Phu Trong, who chaired the session, asked relevant offices to implement tasks necessary to ensuring the process runs as scheduled.
Capital Law concerns
There remain differences of opinions on how to give special status to Ha Noi in the draft Capital Law as the country's centre for economics, politics, culture and finance.
During their meeting yesterday, members of the National Assembly Standing Committee agreed on the need for the bill on Capital Law.
Nguyen Van Thuan, chairman of the Law Committee, asked the draft committee to go into more detail about Ha Noi's proposed "special treatment" that will include setting out the responsibilities of the central Government and the Ha Noi Municipal People's Committee and policies to enable Ha Noi authorities to implement their rights and obligations. However, he said these policies had to be workable and within the framework of the Constitution.
Ha Hung Cuong, minister of Justice, said that under the Politburo's Resolution 15 on the development guidelines for Ha Noi for 2001-10, the capital should institutionalise specific regulations on population density in the core zone and the city's centre and lay out requirements for inhabitants living in the inner city, such as the need to have a stable job and fixed accommodation.
The resolution also encouraged Ha Noi authorities to come up with measures to persuade its citizens to move out of the centre to outlying districts.
"Being the capital city with multi-functions as the country's economic, political, cultural and financial centre, Ha Noi must have the Capital Law which is unique," Cuong said.
Meanwhile, Ha Van Hien, chairman of the Economic Committee, suggested that Ha Noi be given the right to retain a part of any surplus revenue collected to invest in development.
"This policy has already been introduced in some border provinces with busy border gates and it has been successful," Hien said.
Tran The Vuong, vice chairman of the Law Committee, expressed his concern about the practicability of some policies set out in the draft law, particularly the provision on requirements for people from other provinces wanting to become Hanoians.
"On paper it sounds all right. But can it be implemented in reality? " he asked.
However, under the Constitution, all Vietnamese citizens have the right to live anywhere.
Vu Hong Khanh, vice chairman of the Ha Noi People's Committee, said although the Capital Ordinance had been implemented for 10 years, many problems had arisen that have not been resolved.
He cited as an example the fact that under the ordinance, industrial parks and hospitals must be removed from inner city areas. However, he said that had not happened.
The draft Capital Law is expected to be approved at the final session of the current National Assembly in March 2011. — VNS