KUWAIT CITY, Feb 25: The current election in Kuwait appears to be another milestone in an ongoing process of gradual restructuring and devolution of authority.
As discussed previously, the principle of devolution of authority has an important bearing on the equilibrium between the citizen and the government, even if the interests of the citizen are not at stake.
Devolution of authority thus gives greater choices for the government to make to improve public services. Every citizen is equal and his interests have the same weight on the government and political parties. As stipulated by the constitution, devolution is a "giant step" that will eventually turn Kuwait into a fully participatory democracy, with authority vested firmly in the hands of the people. And all democratic politics will be governed by freedom of choice, as well as the principle of equality and the need to direct political and administrative power directly to the people.
In this context, I urge everyone to conduct this election without forgetting that the goals of our constitutional government are to protect the people against external threats (terrorist activities) and internal threats (corruption). Currently, national security is increasingly complicated and this reflects the complexity of national challenges, especially the challenges posed by regional issues that undermine the stability of the whole region.
Kuwait is one of the six “front-line states” in the front line of security challenges.
At the same time, most of the peoples of the Middle East have been suffering from massive unemployment and despair. A part of the populations are in precarious circumstances due to social problems, such as poverty, disease, lack of basic needs and low levels of education, leading to domestic terrorism, and even death. This makes the Kuwaiti elections necessary.
Democracy is being promoted and exercised not by giving money to candidates in elections, but by encouraging people to show that they are ready to achieve collective objectives to solve the problems they have faced and resolve the economic and political issues of the country. The polls are for people to choose the people who, after serving the country, will continue to serve. Elections are not for the people to give orders or impose their choice, but elections are for people to freely decide, not impose, and to choose with conscience.
An important reason for holding these elections is the fear of internal terrorism and the need to face this threat in a time of war. If the government's authority were to be curtailed, or weakened, the country's safety and security would be at stake and this will create multiple problems for the state. The thought of holding fresh elections every two years is full of worries that some would misuse these elections to interfere in the affairs of the state.
Holding snap elections is something we all regret because it will be destructive for the people. It is a waste of time and money. I believe it will not be beneficial to the people as it will not serve their interest. The whole nation, therefore, must observe and support the independence of the elections law and security, national and human interests.
- Khalid Al-Otaibi is an expert in political and military issues and lecturer at Kuwait University.
He can be reached at [email protected]
(Translated by Zaid Al-Sewedy)