Beirut- The Lebanese government approved on Friday allocations for the supervisory authority for the parliamentary elections that are set to take place in spring 2018.
The decision was taken following a session chaired by Prime Minister Saad Hariri at the Grand Serail. The session had a 63-item agenda.
At the end of the meeting, Minister of Information Melhem Riachi read the following statement: “The Council of Ministers held its ordinary meeting at the Grand Serail chaired by Prime Minister Saad Hariri and approved its agenda. It will hold its next meeting at the Presidential Palace to discuss current issues.”
Asked whether the cabinet approved the item regarding the electoral supervisory authority, Riachi said: “This item was approved, and all pending issues will be discussed during the next meeting.”
Before entering the cabinet meeting, Interior Minister Nuhad al-Mashnouk told reporters: “I want to emphasize that elections will take place on time (in May 2018). What we are discussing is the mechanism (to implement the new vote law) and not the date of the elections. Any discussion among the political parties is on the implementation of this miracle law. Also, the biometric card is being discussed with the political parties.”
Following the cabinet session, Hariri met with Finance Minister Ali Hassan Khalil, Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil, Culture Minister Ghattas Khoury and Energy and Water Minister Cesar Abi Khalil to discuss a parliamentary session, slated for Monday, when lawmakers are set to deliberate on draft laws over tax amendments previously approved by the cabinet and a settlement to past years worth of extra-budgetary spending.
On the eve of the session, the General Confederation of Lebanese Workers and other unions threatened to resort to a general strike and a protest after signs that the government would halt a public sector wage increase if revenues from taxes are not secured.