A Kuwaiti voter residing in the new residential area of Nahdha yesterday filed a new petition calling for the court to suspend the July 27 election because his area is not listed among any of the five electoral constituencies. As a result, the voter will not be able to participate in the election either as a candidate or voter. Under Kuwait election law, a candidate must be a registered voter and for citizens to vote, their residential areas must be part of any of the five constituencies.It was the third petition against the election.
Lawyer Adel Al-Abdulhadi filed a petition calling the administrative court to call off the election because the Amiri decree calling for polls was approved by an illegitimate Cabinet. The constitution stipulates that the Cabinet must include at least one elected MP. In the current Cabinet, Minister of Social Affairs and Labour Thekra Al-Rasheedi is the elected MP but her membership has been nullified after the constitutional court ruling on June 16.
Abdulhadi said that all decisions issued by the Cabinet are illegal and warned that if the election was not stopped to rectify the constitutional error, the results will be challenged and this may lead to scrapping the Assembly for the third time since June last year. The second petition was filed by Jassem Al-Enezi who called on the court to freeze the election until the constitutional court explains parts of its June 16 ruling. The court is scheduled to issue the explanation on Sept 18.
A number of heavyweights were among 38 new candidates who filed to run in the election yesterday, including several candidates who were among the opposition that boycotted the Dec 1 election. The new candidates included Riyadh Al-Adasani and Abdullah Al-Turaiji, members of the scrapped opposition-dominated Assembly elected in Feb 2012. Adasani said after filing his papers that he has decided to take part after the constitutional court confirmed the controversial amendment to the electoral law. Among other prominent candidates were senior liberal former MP Marzouk Al-Ghanem, former minister and MP Hussein Al-Huraiti and former Salaf Islamist MP Ali Al-Omair. They also included Abdulrahman Al-Jeeran and Saud Al-Khuraiji, members of the scrapped Assembly.
Ghanem, a member of the liberal Labour Action Bloc, told reporters that all disputes must now be resolved within the constitutional framework after the constitutional court upheld the electoral law amendment. The former lawmaker called on voters to participate in the next election as he described the next Assembly as very crucial and expected it to make key achievements. Omair also called on voters to participate saying there is no more justification for the boycott. The former lawmaker said it was premature to announce contesting the speaker’s post, adding he wanted to see the composition of the Assembly first. Registration of candidates closes on Saturday.
By B Izzak, Staff Writer