When they counted most of the ballots yesterday evening, it became clear. Those who called the referendum against the law on the construction of the second railroad track between Divača and Koper were unsuccessful.
According to the SMC [Stranka modernega centra, or Modern Centre Party, the party of Prime Minister Dr. Miro Cerar], this track should reduce the number of trucks on highways and thus provide cleaner air.
The law was supported by more than fifty percent of those who came to the polls, while fewer voted against it.
A successful referendum [to reject a law ratified by the National Assembly] needs at least two fifths of eligible voters to take part [with a majority voting against the law], which in this case would be about 342,000 voting against.
Approximately 20 percent of voters took part in the referendum.
»With their non-participation, the voters voiced their distrust of those who called the referendum, thus supporting the government continuing the project,« stated the Prime Minister, Dr. Miro Cerar, after the polls closed. »Today’s low voter turnout is a clear signal from citizens to politicians that they do not want more political games with the second track.«
Some citizens were angry that Slovenia spent a lot of money on this referendum, as much as 3.3 million euros.
But others feel that if citizens were not given a referendum then this would have denied them the right to participate in democratic decision-making.
The construction of the second railroad track between Divača and Koper is expected to start in November.
Points to consider
- What do you do if something in school bothers you?
- How do you express your wishes?
- Why it is important for citizens to have a right to referendum?