Divisions erupt over right to vote in polls

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KUWAIT CITY, April 20: Two contradictory parties are being shaped based on their position on allowing the holders of Kuwaiti citizenship according to Article Two of the Nationality Law – those granted the Kuwaiti nationality for any reason and settled in Kuwait before 1920 – and their successors to vote and contest the parliamentary elections.

Constitutional expert Professor Muhammad Al-Muqatei is among the prominent personalities calling for not allowing the abovementioned citizens to vote and contest the elections. He argued that allowing these to vote and contest the elections as per law number 144/1994 led to the elimination of one of the bases of the Constitution. He then stressed the need to nullify the law. On the other hand, another constitutional expert – Professor Muhammad Al-Fili – said preventing such citizens from voting and contesting the elections is not politically wise. He warned about the possibility that appeals will be filed on the constitutionality of the elections if this step is taken.

Former MP Thamer Al-Suwait said the intellectual class in any society is supposed to lead their nations towards more freedom and rights, as well as enhancing justice and equality. He added that intellectuals are not asked to push the society backward through the call for nullification of Law No. 144/1994. He concluded that Kuwait has no room for racist and backward speeches.

Former MP Khalid Al-Enezi criticized the idea of depriving some citizens of the right to vote and run for elections. He pointed out this action is a violation of the Constitution and it will destroy the national fabric. He claimed an advisor at the Cabinet is behind this suggestion. He did not name the advisor, indicating the latter is known for his wrong legal opinions.

Former MP Abdullah Al-Traiji stressed the need to avoid talking about decrees of necessity, which have yet to be issued and unlikely to be issued before the official dissolution of the 2020 Parliament. He said some parties have been raising such issues to instigate chaos and disputes among citizens; thereby, opening the way for accusing, doubting and offending others.

Former MP Fayez Al-Jomhour asserted that preventing some citizens from voting and running for elections will shatter the society into pieces. He added the society should confront sectarianism, stratification and racism; while fortifying the rule of law, social and legal justice. By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

This news has been read 13456 times!

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