Justice chancellor: Survey cannot be carried out instead of referendum

Chancellor of Justice Ülle Madise.
Chancellor of Justice Ülle Madise. Source: Anna Aurelia Minev/ERR

Chancellor of Justice Ülle Madise said in the Vikerraadio program "Uudis +" that a survey cannot be conducted in Estonia instead of a referendum.

"There are countries where a referendum can be just a survey, where the question is to find out the opinion of the people. This is not the case in Estonia. In Estonia, the decision of the referendum is always binding and it is clearly stated who can participate," Madise said on Monday.

"As the referendum has a clearly binding result in Estonia, it is a very important event in state life, only adult citizens of the Republic of Estonia whose active legal capacity is not restricted in terms of the right to vote will participate," Madise added.

EKRE chairman Martin Helme told ERR on Monday that the referendum could also be carried out as a survey.

Madise emphasized that if there is a wish to amend the Constitution of the Republic of Estonia, the draft law amending the constitution must be put to a vote.

According to the draft prepared by EKRE, the referendum would take place on the day of local elections on October 17, 2021. The referendum question would be: "Are you in support of a proposal to supplement the Estonian Constitution § 27 with the sentence 'Marriage is a lasting union between one man and one woman?" It would be a "yes" or "no" question.

Madise stated that referendum cannot go ahead if 61 members of the Riigikogu do not agree to it. 


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Editor: Helen Wright

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