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Monday , December 16 2019

Poll bill hit as unconstitutional

KUWAIT CITY, June 23: The bill on amending the National Assembly Election Law in order to ban citizens convicted of offending God, the Prophets (Peace be Upon Them) and HH the Amir from contesting the elections is unconstitutional, says the National Democratic Alliance.

In a press statement Thursday, the alliance pointed out that the bill, which the Assembly approved Wednesday, violates the most basic constitutional and legal principles which allow convicted citizens to run for elections provided they have been completely rehabilitated.

The alliance argued that the abovementioned acts have been criminalized through some laws passed by previous parliaments, indicating the prison sentence and fine are enough punishments so there is no need to go to the extent of prohibiting those convicted of such acts from contesting the elections.

It went on to say that choosing candidates is the decision of voters and no one has the right to interfere with their choices. The alliance admitted being surprised by the inclusion of God and the Prophets (Peace be Upon Them) in the amendment bill, asserting the number of people convicted of such acts in Kuwait is minimal; hence, the proposed deterrent is unnecessary.

It then wondered if the amendment is aimed at embarrassing members of the Parliament and the public. The alliance asserted that its position on the latest amendment is in line with its view on the proposal to execute anyone who offends the Prophet (PBUH), expressing disappointment over the statements of some former MPs and politicians who called for also banning those convicted of offending the companions and wives of the Prophet (Peace be Upon Them) from contesting the election.

Meanwhile, MP Mohammed Nasser Al-Barrak has proposed adding a paragraph to Article Two of National Assembly Law number 35/1962 as follows: “A citizen convicted of offending the companions and wives of Prophet Mohammad (Peace be Upon Them) is banned from contesting the election.”

By Abubakar A. Ibrahim Arab Times Staff

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