Vietnam’s Public Referendum Act comes into effect today

By Vo Hai   June 30, 2016 | 11:24 pm PT
A new Law on Referendum – one of the more prominent human rights-related laws in Vietnam - has come into effect today, giving state authorities the right to call a referendum to gather public opinion on key issues.

The Law on Referendum has eight chapters with 52 articles. Under the new legislation, the National Assembly – Vietnam’s highest legislative body - has the right to call a referendum on key issues.

These issues include parts of the constitution; matters related to sovereignty, national territory – defense – security; external relations that directly affect national interests; crucial social and economic matters that significantly influence the country’s development; and other important issues.

The result of a referendum will be recognized with a majority vote. A referendum regarding the constitution will require two thirds of the vote.

All referendums are binding and will take effect immediately on the announcement date. Their results must be respected by all state agencies, organizations and individuals, according to Article 11 of the legislation.

Parties that can call for a referendum include the NA's Standing Committee, the state president, the government or at least one third of NA deputies.

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