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Tuesday, October 21 2014 @ 01:20 AM EDT

267 Register as "Yes" and 66 as "No"

Canal Expansion (Source: La Prensa) The time period specified by Panama's Electoral Tribunal (TE) for groups who either support or oppose the expansion of the Panama Canal closed yesterday with a total of 333 groups or organizations registering their positions on the issue. Panamanians will go to the polls to vote in a national referendum on 22 October. According to statistics released by the TE, 267 groups registered in support of the proposal and 66 registered as opposing. The 30th of September is the last day for the eight political parties and the 333 different groups to submit a list of representatives to the TE who will help oversee the election process. (Editor's Comment: There have been a lot of cases in which the leadership of a particular group like SUNTRACS does not represent the feelings of a majority of their membership. This process of allowing groups or organizations was designed by the TE to allow for the maximum participation from civic organizations in the process, and to allow them to express their support or opposition in a public way. The 66 groups of the 333 total against the referendum represents about 20% of the total and the informal poll on Panama Guide has been running at about 80% in favor as well. The most recent public polling shows 67% in favor with another 11% undecided so at this point it seems that the resolution will pass easily considering that only a simple majority is needed. Personally, I don't see a danger of this referendum being rejected at this point and expect it to pass at about 75% for and 25% against.)

REFERENDO. 267 grupos se inscriben por el ‘sí’ y 66 por el ‘no’ Leonardo Flores lflores@prensa.com Con un total de 333 grupos a favor y en contra del proyecto de ampliación del Canal, culminó ayer el período de inscripciones en el Tribunal Electoral (TE) para participar en la campaña del referendo del próximo 22 de octubre, que decidirá el futuro de la ampliación de la vía acuática. Según el TE, 267 grupos se registraron a favor del "sí" a la obra canalera, mientras que 66 lo hicieron para promover el "no". El 30 de septiembre es el último día para que los ocho partidos políticos y los 333 grupos representativos del "sí" y del "no" suministren al TE la lista de sus representantes para la veeduría de los escrutinios. Mañana, lea en La Prensa los argumentos de 15 grupos y organizaciones sociales que están a favor y en contra del proyecto de ampliación.

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