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Kuwaiti Court Annuls Decision to Disqualify Electoral Candidates

Kuwaiti Court Annuls Decision to Disqualify Electoral Candidates

Wednesday, 21 September, 2022 - 08:30
A view shows the first parliament session held after elections, in Kuwait City, Kuwait December 15, 2020. (Reuters)

The Kuwaiti court of appeals annulled the disqualification of three parliamentary elections candidates and suspended decisions on five others until the constitutional court reaches a ruling on the “offender” law, thus allowing all the candidates to run in the elections that will be held on Sept. 29.

The court, headed by Judge Adel Al-Kandari, suspended the decisions of the Ministry of Interior to disqualify the candidates, and referred the argument over the unconstitutionality of the “offender” law to the Constitutional Court for a ruling.

The “offender” law bars Kuwaitis, who have judicial rulings against them over blasphemy or insulting the Emir, of practicing their constitutional right to vote or running in elections.

The Court of Appeal, headed by Judge Muhammad Khattab, had ruled to annul the election administration’s decision to disqualify former MP Khaled Shakir from the Fifth Constituency, and rejected the retroactive application of the “offender” law.

In a related context, the Court of Cassation, headed by Judge Adel Bouresli, rejected, in a consultation session, the appeal submitted by former MP Bader Al-Dahoum against the decision not to include his name in the voters’ list.

Nine candidates announced their withdrawal from the upcoming parliamentary race, bringing the total to 30 withdrawals, since the opening of candidacy for the National Assembly elections on Aug. 29.

The deadline for withdrawing candidacies ends on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Interior said on Tuesday that Lieutenant-General Anwar Al-Barjas chaired a meeting to discuss the security and logistical preparations for the elections.

The meeting reviewed the security, media, municipal and logistical preparations and the coordination mechanism between the ministries of Interior, Justice, Information, Education, Social Affairs and Community Development, and the Kuwait City Municipality.

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