An advocacy group lobbying to change Israel's system of government, the Forum for Government Stability, welcomed the announcement Tuesday of the formation of a national unity government, calling it a historic opportunity to change Israel's system of government as early as the term of the current Knesset.
The agreement struck between Kadima leader Shaul Mofaz and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the terms under which Kadima will be joining the government contains a commitment to change the system of government.
A number of longtime Israeli business figures including Gezi Kaplan of Osem, contractor Uri Dori, and aviation and cellular executive Amos Shapira, welcomed the commitment, saying it could pave the way toward greater political and economic stability.
In recent months, the Forum for Government Stability, which was founded in 2008 and counts more than 60 leading figures among its members, including many from the business community, has worked behind the scenes to forge a consensus among party leaders in the coalition and the opposition on the major aspects of a proposal to change the system of governance.
This includes reducing the number of cabinet ministers and deputy ministers; introduction of regional constituencies through which Knesset members are elected in the future; raising the minimum percentage of the vote that parties need to be represented in parliament from the current 2%; and increasing the number of Knesset members required to lead to the fall of the government.
The forum held a secret meeting last week at the home of Strauss Group director Michael Strauss that was attended by Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz, a Netanyahu confidante, who has been involved on the prime minister's behalf in efforts on government reform. Also present was Kadima MK Avi Dichter.
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