‘Consensus vital for progress’ – Let people decide through poll

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KUWAIT CITY, March 21: “We should let the people decide through the parliamentary election, since the nation is the source of all authorities; and we must ensure the procedures are constitutional to prevent the nullification of the next legislature,” says National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim. Al-Ghanim made the statement in a joint press conference with Deputy Speaker Ahmed Al -Shuhoumi and Chairman of the Legal and Legislative Affairs Committee MP Obaid Al-Wasmi after the Constitutional Court nullified the decree on dissolving the 2020 Assembly and the call for fresh elections in 2022.

National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim

He affirmed that he and majority of the lawmakers want the people to make the decision through the voting process. He also stressed that the Constitutional Court strictly complies with the Constitution, while holding the executive authority responsible for the erroneous procedures. He pointed out that repeating the same mistakes leads to the same results – a waste of time and efforts. He said hard work is needed to ratify laws on establishing the Higher Commission for Elections, and guarantee fair and transparent elections; affirming such laws will protect the next legislature. He then confirmed that he respects all the authorities granted to His Highness the Amir Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jabwe Al-Sabah as per the Constitution. On his decision not to run in the September 2022 election; Al-Ghanim called to mind that at the time, he said he would let the days reveal the hidden truth.

“Now, the truth is out regarding double standards, switching positions and abandoning principles; hence, the need for citizens to elect their representatives in the legislature immediately,” he asserted. “Obviously, the people are depressed and disappointed; because the parliament and government keep on changing, yet they are still facing the same problems. The issue is beyond the alleged conflicts –Marzouq Al-Ghanim versus Ahmed Al- Saadoun, 2020 Assembly versus 2022 Assembly or Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid versus Sheikh Ahmad Al-Nawaf – as the problem lies in political rhetoric, not personalities or names. We cannot achieve national goals without a national development program approved by all parties with a clear timetable for public institutions to regain the citizens’ trust. We are ready to fully support the government, provided it is honest and remains committed to the implementation of its work program,” the speaker added.

Meanwhile, Al-Shuhoumi reaffirmed his loyalty to His Highness the Amir; emphasizing that he respects and follows whatever decision the Amir takes. He said some individuals claim that the 2022 election was fair, wondering what would happen if the people find out that thousands voted even if they were not eligible. He added there have been calls to attack State institutions and many entities spread misleading information in a bid to manipulate the election results. He underscored the need to form a fact-finding committee to conduct investigations on the 2022 election. He urged the citizens to trust the rulings of the Constitutional Court, indicating the court’s recent decision prevented the executive authority from controlling its legislative counterpart through the issuance of a non-cooperation decree. He also unveiled a plan to compensate for the wasted parliamentary time and stop the extravagance that has been going on for years. He added the country needs the concerted efforts of everyone, not disputes.

Moreover, Al-Wasmi thinks the absence of an integrated strategy is a huge problem; indicating he had earlier submitted a comprehensive vision on addressing perennial issues – some of which started in 1962 – through the coordinated efforts of the legislative and executive authorities. He said many issues cannot be solved within a short period of time; hence, the importance of coordination between the concerned authorities. He went on to say that he previously presented the national dialogue document with the contributions of the consultants of His Highness the Amir consultants, legislature and government. He urged those who criticized his vision to present a better idea; clarifying that he is not claiming his vision is the best, so anyone who has a better idea must come forward and present it to the public. He added the remarkable global developments, including financial and economic issues, will have an impact on Kuwait. He stated there is no blank check for the government, and that he welcomes the idea of allowing the citizens to take a decision through fresh elections; stressing the last elections reflected the will of the forgers, not the nation’s will. “Strangely, the number of votes was way higher than the number of eligible voters. The Election Law must be amended to guarantee honest and fair elections,” he concluded. By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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