‘Electoral silence’ begins Wednesday noon

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KUWAIT CITY, April 1: Electoral silence for the 2024 National Assembly elections begins April 3, Wednesday, at noon and ends on April 4, election day, said the Ministry of Information Monday. In a statement to KUNA, acting undersecretary for press and publications LafiAl-Subaie said that according to Article 22 of the Election Law No. 4, 2024, the electoral silence would begin for 24 hours, meaning that programs, interviews, reports, polls, and other materials about the election would not be broadcasted. The media message would be dedicated to only encouraging citizens to cast their vote during the election, providing information in regards to where to vote, he added. He pointed out that the reason behind the electoral silence was to provide voters with a breather and a chance to choose their candidates for the National, affirming that the Ministry of Information was keen on the success of the democratic process. Meanwhile, Director of the Election Affairs General Department in the Ministry of Interior Brigadier Ahmed Al-Hajri has confirmed the completion of preparations for the National Assembly Election on Thursday.

He said 123 schools were allocated for the election: 118 will be used as polling precincts and five for counting the votes. This is in addition to the provision of 759 ballot boxes and 168 patrols to carry the ballot boxes. He affirmed coordination with the Information Technology General Department for the printing of ballots. He also revealed there has been an agreement with the Ministry of Education to allocate Khawla School for Girls in Shuwaikh residential area for keeping the ballot boxes before distributing them to the schools allocated for voting on Thursday morning.

He added 1,518 podiums (two in each polling center) have been prepared for the voters to cast their votes. He said the identification cards of volunteers among the civilian employees at the Ministry of Interior have been issued – a total of 4,871 employees (2,638 women and 2,232 men). He stated that the Election Affairs General Department is coordinating with Kuwait Red Crescent Society (KRCS) to assign volunteer medical teams for the election. He added the department also asked the Consulting Committee at the Ministry of Justice to issue permits for civil society and public benefit societies willing to participate in monitoring the election.

He disclosed the decision on specifying the polling stations has been published by Kuwait Gazette, so the Ministry of Justice can assign the judges who will supervise and manage the polling stations. The total number of candidates for the parliamentary election reached 200 (188 men and 12 women) distributed to the five constituencies as follows: 41 including one woman in the First Constituency, 39 including one woman in the Second Constituency, 32 including seven women in the Third Constituency, 48 including two women in the Fourth Constituency and 40 including one woman in the Fifth Constituency. The number candidates went down to 200 after the withdrawal of 44 candidates – four in the First Constituency, 14 including one woman in the Second Constituency, three in the Third Constituency, 16 in the Fourth Constituency and seven in the Fifth Constituency.

Moreover, the Interior Ministry disqualified 11 candidates and the Court of Cassation has rejected the appeals filed by these candidates. In related news, the Kuwaiti Ministry of Information has launched an electoral media campaign prevailing upon eligible voters to cast their ballots in the country’s forthcoming parliamentary election due on Thursday. Speaking to KUNA on the initiative, the ministry’s Assistant Undersecretary for the Media Service Sector Saad Al-Azmi said that the campaign entitled: “Your Vote…Nation’s Future” is intended to persuade voters to live up to their due responsibilities by handpicking the right candidate. By doing this endeavor, co-organized by Kuwait Municipality, state bodies and civil society organizations, the ministry seeks to coax people into fl owing to polling stations to choose the rival whom they seek able to rightfully represent them at parliament, he said. The campaign, which embraces street advertisements, mass media and social media, mainly urges Kuwaiti citizens to exercise their electoral rights enshrined in the Kuwaiti Constitution, the official pointed out.

By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh
Al-Seyassah/Arab Times Staff and Agencies

This news has been read 2097 times!

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