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Paraguay Table of Contents


The Electoral System

Regulations pertaining to the electoral system, voting, and political parties were found in the Electoral Statute, Law No. 886 of December 11, 1981. The statute's 21 chapters and 204 articles provided minute detail on virtually all aspects concerning elections. Article 1 stipulated that "the suffrage is the right, duty, and public function of the elector. Its exercise is elaborated according to this Law." Article 8 specified that the political party obtaining a majority of votes would receive twothirds of the seats in the Congress, with the remaining one-third divided proportionately among the minority parties. According to Article 20, a party must obtain 10,000 signatures of citizens to be registered. Article 25 proscribed parties of communist ideology or those that sought to overthrow the regime and its principles. Article 26 prohibited subordination to or alliance of parties with parties in other countries, whereas Article 27 banned parties and other political organizations from receiving external financial support. Article 49 made voting obligatory. Articles 158 and 159 defined the functions and composition, respectively, of the Central Electoral Board, the body responsible for implementing and interpreting the provisions of the Electoral Statute. As with the composition of the National Congress, the majority party held twothirds of the seats of the Central Electoral Board.

Data as of December 1988