BEIRUT – A number of newly-elected opposition deputies have voiced their refusal to reelect Nabih Berri as Parliament speaker. Berri, who heads the Amal Movement, has been serving in that position since 1992.
Here’s what we know:
• MP Waddah Sadek (Opposition/West Beirut) told LBCI on Thursday morning that “if we [MPs] elect Berri to head the parliament, we will cancel ourselves as [agents] of change.”
• Adopting a similar stance, MP Halimeh Kaakour (Opposition/Chouf) told VDL (93.3) radio that e-electing Berri would not be acceptable to opposition MPs, adding that they would seek to present an alternative.
• Regarding the vote for the deputy speaker, a position held by Elie Ferzli in the 2018 Parliament, she said that “the available options will be studied and we are keen on making choices that are consistent with our principles.” Ferzli lost his seat in the legislature in the elections held Sunday.
• MP Mark Daou (Opposition/Aley) and Sadek said they would not vote for Berri as Speaker on the grounds that it is not necessary to elect a Shiite as head of Parliament, Nidaa Al-Watan newspaper reported Thursday morning. While Lebanon’s constitution does not stipulate sectarian allotments for state positions, by convention the head of the Parliament is reserved for Shiite politicians.
• Two days ago MP Fouad Makhzoumi (Independent/West Beirut) said that he would “not vote for Berri” to be speaker.
• The incoming Parliament is slated to hold its first session next week, following the end of the May 21 end of the mandate of the previous legislature elected in 2018, with the first order of business being the election of a new speaker, an influential post holding powers on the operations of the Parliament.
• Incumbent MP Samir Geagea (Lebanese Forces/Bcherre) said on Monday that LF “will not vote again for Nabih Berri as we have not done so in the past since 2005.” His party won 19 seats in the new Parliament, an increase of five over its previous return in 2018.
• The Amal Movement, Hezbollah and its allies failed to retain a parliamentary majority. The FPM, considered a March 8 coalition partner of Amal, has long been at odds with the party and Berri.
BEIRUT – A number of newly-elected opposition deputies have voiced their refusal to reelect Nabih Berri as Parliament speaker. Berri, who heads the Amal Movement, has been serving in that position since 1992.Here’s what we know: • MP Waddah Sadek (Opposition/West Beirut) told LBCI on Thursday morning that “if we [MPs] elect Berri to head the parliament, we will cancel...