French Constitutional Council rejects 2nd referendum on pension reform
The Constitutional Council statement reads that "the bill submitted for consideration does not represent a reform relating to the social policy of the nation".
Wednesday witnessed a rejection by the French Constitutional Council of the lawmakers' request for a second time for a referendum on the controversial pension reform by President Emmanuel Macron.
The request was submitted by 253 left-wing opposition politicians, as a Constitutional Council statement reads that "the bill submitted for consideration does not represent a reform relating to the social policy of the nation".
On the other hand, a ban was announced by police in Paris on unauthorized protests from 5 pm to 2 am in front of the Constitutional Council's location of the Palais Royal.
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Despite the ban, the opposition expressed its intention to remain on strike.
The National Assembly, which is the lower house of the French Parliament, is expected to review a draft legislation on the repeal of the pension reform handed in by the Liberties, Independents, Overseas and Territories (LIOT) opposition parliamentary group.
Back in March, the French administration used an emergency constitutional procedure to get the controversial pension bill through parliament, in an attempt to avert a vote in the National Assembly.
After France's top court approved the bill, Macron defied requests to postpone its implementation by signing it, infuriating the population.
Read more: Furious French protest the government's pension bill with casseroles
The main provision of the bill is an increase in the minimum retirement age in France from 62 to 64. It also extends the number of years that people must contribute for a full pension. Macron contends that the measure is necessary to save the pension system from imploding.
The city, however, has already imploded with the total cost of damage in Paris since January amounting to almost 1.6 million euros, Vice Mayor of Paris Emmanuel Gregoire told French media last week.
"The 12 demonstrations against pension reform have cost the city budget 1.6 million euros,” Gregoire said, adding that this amount only covers the damage to urban facilities and does not include expenses to repair private property.