he Congress of El Salvador approved tuesday Special Municipal Reorganization Acta proposal by President Nayib Bukele to reduce the number of municipalities in the Central American country from 262 to 44, but maintain the system of multiple city councils.
“It will be a historic day when we will make a decision to change the distribution of our country’s territory. The opposition still does not understand what happened, but we are satisfied with the work done.” CongressDeputy Ernesto Castro, from the Nuevas Ideas party.
After more than five hours of intense debate, Ratification by a unicameral Congress Of the 84 representatives in the House of Representatives, 67 voted in favor of the new bill, 15 against and 2 abstentions.
along with new territorial organization hIt will open 44 municipalities with their respective mayors and multiple city councils, and 262 districts.
“El Salvador’s Legislative Assembly has just approved by an absolute majority a special municipal restructuring law that reduces the number of mayor’s offices in our country from 262 to 44. History!” tweeted Bukele.
The law will come into force eight days after its publication in the Official Gazette. The restructuring will take effect at the next City Council election, scheduled for March 3, 2024.
this reorganization of municipalities It has also been questioned by analysts and experts on the territory.
“The reconfiguration of the territory must be done through a broad debate, the participation of the community, political parties, trade unions, academia and all sectors involved in this decision-making. It is an aspect that is not done,” said the lawyer of the NGO Acción Ciudadana Eduardo Escobar told The Associated Press.
Escobar also questioned whether the change was made months before the election.
At the meeting with the representatives, the magistrate supreme electoral court They said the changes would not affect the 2024 ballot enough to alter the electoral calendar. They assured that the changes will have no impact on the implementation of residential voting and that voters will continue to exercise their right to vote in the centers to which they have traditionally been assigned.
law It made no mention of a vote-counting formula, they added.
this is the second Buckler’s proposed reforms That will be in Congress a week later, changing the electoral landscape in the country, which holds a presidential election next February.
Last Tuesday, an electoral law reform was approved to eliminate a wasteful system in the allocation of legislative seats and reduce the number of deputies from 84 to 60.
“This was done seven months before the elections with the express purpose of creating the conditions for the official parties to win over the municipality and retain control of the territory. That’s part of this reform, electoral politics and apparently control of the territory reasons,” he added.