Assembly dissolution under scrutiny – Experts debate decree amid conflicting views

Kuwait Times
Fecha de publicación: 
06 Oct 2012

National Assembly was subjected to a delicate constitutional scrutiny by experts and law professors to make sure that it does not have any constitutional violations in it. The source confirmed approving the decree any minute besides other decrees to call for new elections, the state’s budget and transforming Kuwait Airways into a shareholding company, as the Government considers them to be laws that cannot be delayed to meet the urgency requirement, according to Article 71 of the Constitution. The Government source preferred to wait regarding the issuance of a decree to reduce the number of votes as it is decided by HH the Amir and the Government is awaiting his decision.

Meanwhile, a source in the majority bloc said all members have agreed to make a joint statement about boycotting the upcoming elections if the number of votes by a voter is less than the current four votes. The source also added that the bloc received Government assurances that the elections will be held according to the current law (five constituencies and four votes) but the bloc is still not convinced. Meanwhile, former MP Abdallah Al-Barghash said after a meeting at his diwan that the current situation does not require an urgent decree on changing the constituencies and added that any move in this direction will be met with boycotting the elections by the majority.

Al-Barghash described the reduction of the number of votes per voter to one or two by a decree as “a third is coup against the Constitution” and added that those with special interests are working hard with authorities to bring this out according to their liking. He said the majority decided that its next move will be with the participation of the popular movement, youth and the civil society organizations because all are defending their rights and should not leave the matter to a group.

He said that there will be gatherings in various areas of Kuwait adding that no date has been set for a gathering at the Irada square until after coordination with “Nahj”. MP Dr Walid Al-Tabatabae said for the Government to issue an urgent decree to change the constituencies will be a dynamite stick that will blow whatever is left of Kuwait’s constitution. He warned authorities that for each action, there will be an equal reaction. MP Ali Al-Diqbasi wondered if the government intended to change the constituencies then why did it go to the Constitutional Court in the first place and what about its decisive ruling? MP Maasouma Al-Mubarak said reducing the number of votes will help handle the current situation and the chaos Kuwait is going through adding “if the five constituencies and four votes remain then nothing is gained or changed and things will remain the same and in fact, get worse and we will not achieve the stability we are looking for”.

Former MP Nasser Al-Duwailah said he supports reducing the number of votes to one, because the single vote actually reflects the nation’s will and prevents tribal, sectarian and groups’ alliance and gives minorities an opportunity and reflects true representation of the people. He said an urgent decree to reduce the number of votes is constitutional and there’s nothing wrong with it. Nasser Al-Duwailah said he will run for elections if they are conducted according to a constitutional electoral system.

Meanwhile his brother former MP Mubarak Al-Duwailah said it is important to leave the constituencies alone, unless it is done with the agreement of both authorities in the presence of the Assembly according to the current law. He said that any amendment on the election law with a decree will lead into a dark tunnel. MP Ali Al-Rashid asked the majority bloc “Why are you afraid of one vote? And why do you not want an urgent decree after you agreed to run for elections?” He said “You are burning Kuwait for the sake of the speaker’s chair. Kuwait is more important than your chair. Wake up, you are a member of the 2009 Assembly and your speaker is Jassem Al-Kharafi whether you like it or not”.