Chiapas: Congress approves electoral reform. It establishes formal gender equality, but with exceptions

Congreso del estado de Chiapas (@chiapas.gob.mx)

Chiapas State Congress (@ chiapas.gob.mx)

On June 30, the Chiapas State Congress approved reforms and additions to the Code of Elections and Citizen Participation by majority. Such changes allow the approval of the federal political and electoral reform at the state level.

The most controversial points include that of gender equality for candidates for elected office, but the reform allows for the rule to be suspended, for, if the candidate comes from a democratic process of internal election within a party, it is conceivable that equality not be observed in such a case.

As part of the discussion, Alejandra Soriano Ruíz (Party of the Democratic Revolution, PRD), president of the Commission on Gender Equality of the state Congress, asked the lawmakers to remove this exception, but the proposal was rejected. Congresswoman Rosa Alma Siman (Institutional Revolutionary Party, PRI) said in reply that women in Chiapas do not want to participate in politics, and that there are not enough women interested to ensure gender equality.

The delegate of the National Electoral Institute (INE) in Chiapas, Edgar Arias, announced that he will promote the challenging of these reforms before the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation (SCJN), explaining that “on the subject of gender they should retain an exception to the constitutional obligation of parties to observe equality when nominating candidates.”

As for other changes, it is worth mentioning that campaign times were shortened in comparison with the times proposed at a federal level. For the governor it will be 63 days and for Congress and municipal government, 33 days.

For more information (in Spanish):

Impugnarán ante la Corte la reforma electoral aprobada en Chiapas (Proceso, 1ero de julio de 2014)

Congreso de Chiapas homologa reforma electoral (El Universal, 1ero de julio de 2014)

Aprueba Chiapas paridad de género… pero con “candado” (CIMAC Noticias, 2 de julio de 2014)

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