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Kuwait- Shiite political group says will boycott polls  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab Times - 30/10/2012

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(MENAFN - Arab Times) After the government announced the enforcement of the decree to reduce the number of votes - one vote for one eligible voter - some parliamentary blocs, tribes and individuals announced they will boycott the upcoming parliamentary elections to protest this move.

But those tribes, blocs and individuals who support the move say they will contest the elections.

Earlier, the major opposition parliamentary blocs including the Popular Action Bloc, the Development and Reform Bloc and others such as the National Democratic Alliance and the Al-Azmi tribe " the largest Kuwaiti tribe - had announced their decision to boycott the upcoming elections due to what they called changes in the voting system.

Recently, the Shiite political group known as the National Charter Group has issued a statement saying it will also boycott the elections citing dissatisfaction at the recent decision to reduce the number of votes from four to one.

Some well-known members of the group are former minister of commerce and industry AbdulWahab Al-Wazzan, former minister of state for national assembly affairs Abdul-Hadi Al-Saleh, a member of the Municipal Council, Abdul-Karim Al-Saleem and former MP Yusuf Al-Zalzalah.

However, Al-Zalzalah is said to have denied his affiliation to the group saying, "I do not belong to the National Charter Group which does represent me whatsoever. The position taken by the group has nothing to do with me."

He added: "I do not represent the group, I am not one of its members, I am independent and in my opinion those who boycott the elections disobey HH the Amir whom the Constitution gives the full right to issue decrees of necessity."

Meanwhile, according to elders of the Al-Jawarain tribe, it will take part in the forthcoming parliamentary elections. This was disclosed on the sidelines of a meeting which was held to discuss the current situation in the country.

The elders of the tribe stressed HH the Amir has the right to issue decrees of necessity as stipulated in the Constitution. They added boycotting the elections "will neither serve Kuwait nor it will bring stability to the nation."

They stressed the importance of joint work among everyone under the command of HH the Amir.
Secretary-General of the Constitutional Unity Bloc, Lawyer Yakoub Al-Sane has announced his candidacy to contest the elections from the Third Constituency

Al-Sane announced, "After putting my trust in God and my confidence in the Constitutional Unity Bloc and after consultations I have decided to contest the National Assembly elections from the Third Constituency."

Eng Mohamed Owaid Al-Mutairi has also announced his candidacy from the Fourth Constituency. He said "After putting my trust in God I announce my candidacy from the Second Constituency for the 2012 elections under the slogan Kuwait is our will."

Muayyid Al-Khalaf from the Jahra district has officially announced his candidacy for the upcoming elections. He said he supports the decision to reduce the number of votes from four to one to what he called, "eliminate the negativities of the four votes that had strengthened sectarian and tribal sentiments and threatened national unity."

Meanwhile, Professor of Constitutional Law at the Kuwait University Dr Fawaz Al-Jadei has announced a legal team will be formed comprising lawyers to challenge the decree of necessity issued recently on the current electoral voting system 'in an attempt to pull the country out of the crises'.

Al-Jadei added the challenge will take place after preparing petitions to challenge the decree of necessity "which lead to changing election voting mechanism by reducing the number of votes from 4 to one without tampering the current five constituencies."

It may be recalled last Sunday the opposition blocs and youth activists took to the street to protest the announcement of the emergency decree which reduced the number of votes from four to one for every eligible voter.

While, the opposition complains this measure will undermine their chances of winning the elections, the government on the other hand said the measure is necessary to prevent vote-buying and other negativities during the election and will pave the way for other segments of the society to participate in the elections.

In another development, sources disclosed the security forces Friday went to the home of former MP Musallam Al-Barrak with an arrest warrant but did not find him.

The Interior Ministry has been looking for Al-Barrak for more than one week now after the Public Prosecution issued an arrest warrant against him to interrogate him for criticizing HH the Amir in one the opposition rallies organized recently at the Erada Square.

According to sources Al-Barrak had earlier issued a statement saying he will surrender to the authorities Monday morning.

In a related issue, former pro-government MPs Maasouma Al-Mubarak and Salwa Al-Jassar have called on the Minister of Interior Sheikh Ahmed Al-Hmoud Al-Sabah "to apply the law based on an order issued by HH the Amir on former MP Musallam Al-Barrak who is wanted by justice but is still at large.

Al-Jassar reminded HH the Amir has said nobody is above the law. She wants to know if the interior minister doesn't want to apply the law. She said it is his responsibility to maintain law and order and arrest any one who offends the Amir.

Al-Mubarak also criticized the Interior Ministry for failing to arrest Al-Barrak who is wanted for criticizing the Amir .

On the other hand, the Umma Party has rejected measures taken by the authority against Al-Barrak "for his peaceful opposition to government policies."


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