UNDOUBTEDLY, the current political atmosphere in Kuwait is unhealthy in various aspects. For instance, the Parliament deviates from amending outdated laws and from its proper oversight mandate. Instead, we see it soaking in the circle of frivolous interpellations which hamper each State institution and perturb the political life of the country.
It seems some Parliament members have yet to grasp the noble messages included in the speeches of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad A-Jaber Al-Sabah over the past years in terms of adhering to diplomatic principles. Some consider democracy a form of political blackmail or a way to subdue the Parliament to suit their personal interests.
Unfortunately, Kuwaitis did not learn and benefit from past experiences, especially the local and regional situations in 1986. Despite the Iraq-Iran war and what was known as the ‘Tanker War’ and its direct effect on Kuwait, many frivolous interpellations were submitted. This prompted the late HH the Amir Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah to suspend some articles of the Constitution and dissolve the Parliament unconstitutionally.
I remember the late Amir conveying his message to parliamentarians through the then Speaker Ahmad Al-Sadoun.
The content of the message revolved around the MPs and their role in bearing responsibility of the nation and to shun frivolous bids. However, it seemed that Al-Sadoun did not relay the message as it was to the Parliament Office, so the late Amir decided to dissolve the Parliament and the theme then was, “in order to reflect.”
At the time, Kuwaitis became familiar with ‘Monday Diwaniyas’ whose objective was to push for resumption of Parliament activities.
This was exactly the case in 2011 when some people saw the ability to subdue the State for their political purposes and cripple the political system of the country, leading to demonstrations dubbed as the ‘Arab Spring.’
In addition, some people went to the extent of transgressing the integrity of the judiciary and engaged in the unprecedented adventure of storming the Parliament building which was an unacceptable challenge.
In spite of all those unacceptable acts, the State did not retaliate outside the legal and constitutional frameworks. Instead, those who broke the law went through the fair judicial process which lasted for seven years. Eventually, those involved got what they deserved based on the magnitude of the crimes they committed.
At the time, His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah said Kuwait was almost lost – in fact, it was already lost – when he spoke to prominent members of the society. The remedy came through the one-vote decree which rectified the populist representation on one hand, and on the other hand, halted the zeal of risk takers who fell for glamorous slogans that ruined some Arab countries.
In 1986, the suspension of the Constitution received populist approval due to parliamentary malpractices. Today, there is a significant layer of people in this country who see that the parliamentary practice is destructive for democracy and cripples parliamentary work which has deviated from its natural course.
Therefore, putting into action the message conveyed by Parliament Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim from HH the Amir to the MPs depends on the intellectuals among them; particularly his call to stop abusing constitutional tools.
This brings back to mind the dominant scene 32 years ago when the MPs then abandoned their national constitutional role and flouted their national responsibility.
Here we are, the scene is recurring as we see MPs insisting on endorsing bills which are in conflict with the supreme interest of the country. They resort to frivolous interpellations which impede the government’s work, especially those targeting His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah. So far, the number of interpellations against him has reached six.
In short, such interpellations are against the constitutional texts. This shows the political adolescence which does not suit Kuwait, its democracy history and its image in all aspects.
SOURCE : ARABTIMES