Kuwait’s National Assembly (parliament) on Tuesday elected lawmaker Ahmad al-Saadoun as a new speaker.
Al-Saadoun, 87, was elected unchallenged during Tuesday’s vote.
During Kuwait’s September 29 parliamentary elections, al-Saadoun swept to victory with more than 12,000 votes, the highest number in the country’s history.
Before entering the world of politics, al-Saadoun had significant contributions to Kuwait’s sports scene. In 1955, he contributed to establishing the Al-Nahda club, which in 1964 became the Kazma Sports Club.
He also took over the presidency of the Kuwait Football Association from 1968 to 1976. Al-Saadoun also assumed the position of deputy head of the Asian Football Confederation from 1974 to 1982.
In 1975, he won membership in the National Assembly for the first time.
Al-Saadoun was an assembly speaker in 1985, 1992, and 1996.
He obtained the position of deputy assembly speaker in 1981 and was elected as speaker for the first time in 1985.
However, the 1985 assembly was dissolved a year later. The Emir of Kuwait at the time issued an order to dissolve the assembly against the backdrop of a market crisis that led to the collapse of the Kuwaiti stock market.
The country then entered a prolonged political crisis, during which al-Saadoun was active, as were other leaders of democratic action, in demanding the return of constitutional life in the country.
In 1989, a political bloc called for the return of democratic life, but the government responded in 1990 by forming the “National Council” as an alternative to the “National Assembly.” This led to an escalation of widespread opposition and rejection.
After Kuwait’s liberation from the Iraqi invasion and the return of the National Assembly, al-Saadoun returned as a member and head of the assembly in 1992 and 1996.