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Abu Olbeh to lead joint leftist-nationalist election ticket

By Khaled Neimat - Dec 20,2012 - Last updated at Dec 20,2012

AMMAN — Leftists and pan-Arab parties agreed to run for the January 23 parliamentary elections under one national list, a leftist leader said on Wednesday. 

“We will form the necessary coalitions with candidates at the national level, particularly those who adopt programmes similar to ours, but we will not have our own candidates to run in the local districts,” Abla Abu Olbeh, secretary general of the Jordanian Democratic People’s Party (Hashed), said.

Under the Elections Law’s mixed system, each voter will have two votes, one at the constituency level and another designated for a 27-seat national list. The same law stipulates that parties and political groups that field candidates for the national list decide the order of candidates.

Abu Olbeh will head the joint ticket, which will include at least one candidate from each of the four member parties.

The list will include — in order — candidates from the Arab Socialist Baath Party, the Arab Progressive Baath Party and the National Movement for Direct Democracy.

It will also include leading political figures whose programmes and ideologies match those of the four parties, according to Abu Olbeh.

Under the Independent Elections Commission’s regulations, the lowest number of candidates on any national ticket is nine.

More national list candidates are expected to be announced in the next few days after several political powers and leaders completed negotiations over members and their order within the list.

Abu Olbeh said that the four parties on the joint ticket aim to participate in a parliament that would play a major role in the country’s political development and set the ground for parliamentary governments.

Former deputy Lower House speaker Atef Tarawneh is expected to announce his list on Thursday, with more than 20 nominees.

A source familiar with the negotiations told The Jordan Times that Tarawneh will lead the ticket after reaching an agreement with former MP Khalil Attiyeh.

Meanwhile, the centrist National Current Party, which has recently announced its national list team, selected camel as its logo.

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