- Kuwait Times Extra
By A Saleh, Staff Writer
KUWAIT: Informed sources said the Islamic Constitutional Movement is inciting activists of youth movements to escalate their opposition against plans of the parliamentary majority and accuse its members of reneging on their promises. They said this incitement has taken place with the knowledge of MPs close to the movement such as Faisal Al-Mislem and Waleed Al-Tabtabaei.
The sources said that “the ICM feels the current period is the best to achieve constitutional amendments it is seeking to guarantee it a means to control decision making and governance, similar to what Muslim Brotherhood groups in other countries like Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and Morocco have adopted. They said the movement believes that not achieving what it wants now means that it will be under attack from several directions, including an amendment of the election system by changing the number of constituencies or reducing the number of votes a voter can cast, which will make it the biggest loser as it is surviving only by vote barters and alliances.
The sources said the ICM’s presence in the fourth and fifth districts is under the umbrella of tribes, and it believes some members there are an obstacle in the way of fulfilling its hopes of constitutional amendments, and that is why it asked its youth to lead an angry resistance against the majority bloc, which is directed against tribal MPs who are not agreeing with their demands. They added that the ICM believes that these tribal MPs are now taking orders from tribal sheikhs whose relations with ICM has changed, as well as those who are in alliance with it such as MPs Ahmad Al-Saadoun and Musallam Al-Barrak.
The ICM believes the sheikhs are forcing tribal MPs to hamper the demands of the majority bloc, so it sought to put popular pressure on them to make them may change their stands or stay neutral, apart from the possibility of hurting them in the electoral race and unmasking them as adopting reformist slogans while they do not implement any of them. Sources said that the ICM’s goals are aligned with those of Saadoun and Barrak in supporting the youth’s demands, because both Saadoun and Barrak need the escalation as a change in the number of constituencies or a reduction in votes that can be cast is a great danger to them and reduces their influence in their constituencies.
For Barrak – if he wins – things will not be like before, while Saadoun’s standing will be in a very weak spot, so they want to push ahead with constitutional amendments to achieve a political victory by which Saadoun embarrasses liberal groups that are at odds with him. Barrak, meanwhile, wants to reinforce his positions and confirm they are still strong in areas that are witnessing the appearance of parties that are taking away from his popularity, and counter others who work against him from his own tribe. The sources said such moves go in favor of the ICM, which is using the youth escalation to serve its goals, especially since it knows that the authorities in Kuwait are working to reduce its influence in governmental leadership posts and muzzle the Muslim Brotherhood in Kuwait.
Meanwhile, informed sources said the Salafist movement has told its two members MPs Khalid Al-Sultan and Abdellatif Al-Ameeri to reject calls for a popular government and a constitutional monarchy, otherwise it will be compelled not to nominate them for the elections along with others who support them. The Salafists declared at a gathering its official stand “against the popular government and the constitutional monarchy” reforms as mentioned in the parliamentary majority proposals. Sources said the gathering asked Sultan and Ameeri not to support the majority and if they insist on this, then the gathering will nominate others and they will not enjoy the support of the Salaf if they run on their own.
On the other hand Independent Islamists in the majority bloc are against a plan to run in the upcoming elections within agreed-upon lists, and insist they will run on their own through their contacts without any commitment to what the bloc wants. Sources said these Islamists have their election bases and arrangements that do not agree with what the bloc is calling for, but they will connect during the elections with the majority only through calls for reform and fighting corruption. They said the majority bloc’s plan, as announced by Mislem, is to run for the elections with 40 candidates in two lists in each constituency if the elections are held with the current five-constituency and four-votes-per-person system.
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