Saturday , October 21 2017

KUWAIT DEMOCRATIC FORUM OUTLINES NATIONAL PROJECT – Dashti candidacy in legal wrangle

KUWAIT CITY, Oct 25: Kuwait’s Administrative Court issued a decision Tuesday allowing former lawmaker Abdul Hameed Dashti to file his candidacy for the National Assembly elections through proxy.

A report published by gulfnews. com said that the Elections Department rejected on Sunday the application presented by Dashti’s son — Talal, arguing that proxy filing was not allowed and that a candidate had to be physically present to have his papers accepted.

Dashti has been out of Kuwait since March as he was undergoing treatment abroad. The controversial lawmaker was sentenced to prison for insulting Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the judiciary in Kuwait.

In late September, a court in Kuwait acquitted Dashti in a case filed against him for insulting Saudi Arabia.

In its verdict, the Criminal Court said that Article Four of the State Security Law regarding acts of hostility could not be applied in the case, arguing that the defendant expressed an opinion and did not carry out an action, Kuwaiti media reported. Under Kuwait’s laws, individuals convicted of hostile act against a foreign country that may expose Kuwait to war or the severance of diplomatic relations, are put on trial and may be sent to jail.

The ruling was pronounced in absentia as the controversial lawmaker, facing several trials, had left Kuwait months ago after he took leave of absence for eight weeks.

Dashti was in July and September sentenced to a total of 25 years after he faced a series of cases for using social media and the media to attack Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.

Meanwhile, Head of Fatwa and Legislation Department Judge Salah Al-Mis’ad confi rmed that the department has submitted a petition against the ruling of the Administrative Court which accepted the lawsuit of former MP Abdul-Hameed Dashti, demanding for nullification of the administrative decision to reject his application to contest the 2016 parliamentary elections slated for Nov 26, 2016.

Al-Mis’ad said the court will set the date to look into the petition against the decision, disclosing the main point of contention is the fact that it is absolutely not permissible for a candidate to give power of attorney to someone to file his candidacy as the rules stipulate personal appearance.

Meanwhile, Kuwait Democratic Forum called for the implementation of a national project ensuring reconciliation and national unity.

In a press statement, the group explained that the project will focus on fi ve points — development of the electoral system, cancellation of laws which limit freedoms, issuance of a decree granting amnesty to all prisoners including political prisoners, stopping the withdrawal of citizenship, and holding a national conference involving all major players in society and the elite to discuss general matters.

Meanwhile, thirty parliamentary hopefuls, including two women, fi led their candidacies for the 2016 National Assembly elections on Monday, increasing the total number of candidates to 321.

Following are the candidates who registered on the seventh day per constituency:

■ First Constituency (five candidates) — Ahmed Musaed Al-Mudej, Jassem Mohammed Abdul-Raheem, Hamad Faial Al-Ouwaian, Khalaf Mohammed Al-Failakawi and Mohammed Nashi Al-Ajmi.

■ Second Constituency (five candidates) — Haidar Jassem Al-Haddad, Rabah Qamar Al-Dufairi, Aliyah Faisal Al-Khalid, Abdullah Taleb Al- Hamad and Omar Hamad Al-Qanaei.

■ Third Constituency (three candidates) — Jassem Ahmed Al-Anjari, Khalil Abdullah Abolul and Abdul- Aziz Issa Al-Baloushi.

■ Fourth Constituency (six candidates) — Thamir Saad Al-Zufairi, Haza Fahad Al-Anazi, Khalid Rufai Al-Shulaimi, Abdul-Latif Abass Al-Manawer, Faris Nasser Mufrej Al-Noun and Mohammed Mufrej Al- Adwani.

■ Fifth Constituency (11 candidates) — Ahmed Mohammed Al-Otaibi, Nadi Hasyan Al-Dowsari, Basheer Ajab Ajab, Shaban Abass Khalaf, Talal LafiAl-Azmi, Abdul-Mohsen Yousef Al-Maqata, Eid Faleh Al- Azmi, Mohammed Suaidan Al-Azmi, Mahmoud Shakir Al-Failakawi, Hani Hussein Shams and Hadel Jassem Al- Mohammed.

Second Constituency candidate Aliyah Al-Khalid expressed happiness over the chance to participate in the legislative and oversight works of the Parliament, stressing that her electoral program focuses on these tasks. She unveiled her plan to be active in setting priorities to serve the interests of Kuwait and its people. She promised to work hard for the benefit of the country in accordance with regional and economic conditions, away from bargaining.

Another candidate in the same constituency, Omar Hamed Al-Qannai, pointed out it is his responsibility to serve the country and protect national interests so he decided to contest the elections. He intends to work on many important issues such as the need to ratify laws on professions and sports. He believes that the Parliament and government must work towards the improvement of the local sports sector.

Fifth Constituency candidate Mohammed Al-Azmi stressed the need to amend some laws like the Election Law such that representation will be according to the actual number of voters. He added the previous Parliament passed the economic reform document so the next legislature should review it to avoid touching the pockets of citizens. He said the next stage is crucial because the previous Parliament was dissolved due to regional circumstances. He asserted, “The situation in the region is critical, hence, we have to be prepared”. He then emphasized the importance of participating in the elections to maintain political stability which is one way of addressing economic problems.

By Abubakar A. Ibrahim Arab Times Staff and Agencies

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