President Pavel Wants To Promote Electronic Voting

Photo: President Pavel visiting Colors of Ostrava. Credit: Tomas Fongus.

North Moravia, July 22 (CTK) – President Petr Pavel is prepared to promote the electronic voting in Czech elections as this kind of voting corresponds with the 21st century, he said at the Meltingpot discussion forum on Friday at the Colours of Ostrava pop music festival that ends today.

“Let’s go to the 21st century. Let’s make voting electronic, as well as the gathering of signatures for the registration of presidential candidates,” Pavel said within an one-hour interview in which questions were asked by Bohumil Pecinka and Petros Micholupos.

When Pavel arrived for the interview, he received a standing ovation from the full arena of some 1,500 people.

Pavel said e-voting will make the situation easier especially for Czech voters staying abroad who often must travel long distances to voting rooms. However, he said he as president has no powers to push this change through, but he had many informal possibilities to promote it.

In the interview, Pavel said he is not against legalising cannabis. “According to a number of studies, cannabis does causes less damage than other legal drugs. Considerations about regulated legalisation are appropriate,” he said. He said that if cannabis is legalised, people who are in prison because of cannabis should be granted pardon.

Pavel said granting pardon was a risky and tricky power of the president, but he is ready to take over the whole agenda from the Justice Ministry. Previous president Milos Zeman handed this agenda to the ministry.

Before this happens, the Presidential Office needs to have access to some databases again so that it can verify information needed for possible granting of pardons. The president said he already talked about this with Justice Minister Pavel Blazek (Civic Democrats, ODS).

Pavel said he would like to use his right to grant pardons first of all in cases of court errors, inadequately high sentences and important humanitarian circumstances.

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