Referendum on Bulgaria's Belene NPP Confirmed Irreversible
The inspection of the petition of the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) for a referendum on the Belene NPP project has concluded, with 543 639 valid signatures, enough to make the vote irreversible.
Under Bulgarian legislation, the Bulgarian Parliament is under an obligation to call a referendum if a petition is backed by no less than 500 000 valid signatures.
The results of the inspection of the 717 021 signatures collected by BSP were submitted to Parliament Thursday, Bulgarian Sega daily reports.
According to Lilyana Pavlova, Minister of Regional Development and Public Works, who commented the results Friday in Parliament, a total of 173 382 signatures are invalid, slightly over 137 000 signatures have wrong data, including civil identification number (EGN) and names, 28 000 signatures were entered two or three times, over 2200 were signatures by minors signatures, over 1300 were signatures by foreigners, and nearly 3000 were signatures of deceased.
The number of valid signatures is sufficient to make it obligatory for Parliament to call a referendum.
The Bulgarian Parliament can only amend the wording of the question(s) without changing the meaning.
By end-October, the petition must be reviewed by parliamentary committees and a plenary session must adopt a decision backing the vote.
After the Parliament adopts a decision, the President must set a date for the referendum.
On Wednesday, a representative of the largely unknown US enterprise Global Power Consortium, Samuel Reddy, expressed interest in the construction of the cancelled project for the construction of the 2000 MW Belne nuclear power plant.
Center-right ruling party GERB asked Parliament to authorize Delyan Dobrev, Minister of Energy, Economy and Tourism, to conduct negotiations with a private investor for the construction of the nuclear power plant.
The Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) suggested that MPs had to revoke their decision for freezing the project.
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