EFEGuatemala City

Guatemala's Constitutional Court agreed Wednesday to hear a motion to delay this year's general elections, now scheduled for Sept. 6, to allow for the implementation of electoral reforms prior to the voting.

The request was presented by the New Republic Movement, whose presidential candidate, Anibal Garcia, confirmed the delaying motion to EFE.

He said that the procedure is a "constitutional guarantee" and that the only thing that his party is requesting is, on the basis of "logical and legal reasoning," for the elections be postponed until November.

Before holding the elections, he added, the reform of the electoral and parties law should be approved so that it will be in force for the balloting, in which some 7.5 million Guatemalans are eligible to select their president and vice president for 2016-2020.

In addition, 158 legislators will be elected to Congress, as well as mayors and city councilors in 338 municipalities.

Guatemala's leading business association, citing the opinion of of three constitutional attorneys, said last week that postponing the date of the elections "was not feasible" and that the electoral law cannot be modified once elections have been called.

Garcia, however, says the constitution must not be interpreted "article by article" but rather "in its entirety."

"Quite apart from legitimacy is democracy," he added.

Garcia said he expects the Constitutional Court to rule on his motion by the end of this week.

Potentially delaying the date of the elections has been put on the table by several social organizations because the administration of President Otto Perez Molina was tainted by corruption scandals.