7th APRIL 2015 - Vol.XXXVIII No.018
Local News

Visions for a new Bahrain

ONE of the country's key political societies yesterday renewed its vision for a new Bahrain.

The National Unity Assembly wants parliament to be given more authority in respect of appointing government ministers and passing laws.

It also says ministers should be questioned in open meetings and not just by committees.

The group made the calls during a gathering held in Hananiya, East Riffa, last night.

It was attended by thousands of people who waved Bahraini flags and called for a better Bahrain.

"The purpose of the gathering is to continue the process of unity," National Unity Assembly (NUA) secretary-general Abdulla Al Howaihi told the GDN on the sidelines of the event.

"This is our second meeting and we will continue with other gatherings in different areas to keep the voice of the Bahraini people as high as possible about what happened here in February.

"We are trying to analyse what is happening in Bahrain, but we think the main reason is Iran, Israel and the US and some people inside are responsible for what happened and are using internal problems to do it.

"We think parliament has done nothing in the last 10 years, also there is corruption of some powers in Bahrain which has not made the correct direction for Bahrain and all has been used by these people to push the situation in Bahrain and what happened."

Mr Al Howaihi said the assembly raised its recommendations at the National Dialogue in July.

Their main proposal is to make parliament an authority with more powers to properly represent the people.

"We need the government approved by parliament, this will give a stronger cabinet," he said.

"We want ministers to be approved by parliament, but it seems the government will only go for programmes of ministers to be approved by parliament and this is not enough.

"Also ministers should be questioned in an open meeting not by committees.

"Parliament should also be the one to have the final word on passing laws, it shouldn't be left to the Shura Council to have the final word."

Mr Al Howaihi said the assembly was concerned about the advice being offered by the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry, which is being led by Professor Mahmoud Cherif Bassiouni.

He said the assembly believed the commission was wrongly interfering in Bahrain's justice system.

"They asked to release some people that were arrested at that time of the unrest and we want to stop it," said Mr Al Howaihi.

"We think it is not their responsibility and they shouldn't interfere.

"We gave the Bassiouni commission more than 400 names of people affected by the situation in different ways, but he met only a few of them.

"We think some illegal organisations were those who hit our people and caused injuries to them. These illegal groups are terrorist groups, it's not about Sunni or Shia."

Mr Al Howaihi said the assembly feared that what happened in Iraq could be repeated in Bahrain.

"We want to stop the copying of what happened in Iraq happen to Bahrain," he said.

"If we allow it, these people will rule and kill our people. In Iraq, people were killed and arrested, humiliated and tortured and kicked from their homes." [email protected]

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