San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Vote on polemic Nicaraguan defense bills postponed until Monday

Opposition lawmakers this morning convinced the ruling Sandinista front to postpone for three days a series of three controversial defense bills that President Daniel Ortega submitted to the National Assembly Tuesday afternoon for urgent approval by Friday.

Congressman Victor Hugo Tinoco, head of the minority Sandinista Renovation Movement (MRS), said opposition lawmakers were able to postpone voting on the bills until Monday, Dec. 6.

Congress will break for year-end recess Dec. 15, not Dec. 3 as The Nica Times reported earlier.

“We have until Monday to study the bills, which are important measures dealing with national security and the border,” Tinoco said (see separate stories).

Despite the slight delay, lawmakers loyal to Ortega are expected to have the majority of votes needed to approve the bills next Monday. After the bills are passed in first vote, they would go to a second article-by-article vote, which is expected to happen the same day.

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