New Bahraini lawmakers jostle for key positions

November 3, 2010

Bahrain’s newly elected lawmakers are seemingly caught in a brewing power struggle for the key positions in the lower chamber.

The struggle comes on the heels of the final round of the parliamentary elections on October 30 that ushered in a new look parliament where 22 of the 2006-2010 members were re-elected, 17 are making their debut and one member, a veteran of the 2002-2006 team, making a new entry. Al Wefaq and independent lawmakers hold 35 of the 40 seats, Al Asala has three and the Islamic Menbar has two.

Al Wefaq, the largest bloc in the 2006-2010 lower chamber carried the 18 constituencies in which it fielded candidates. It aspires to take the position of Speaker from Khalifa Al Dhahrani, who has already expressed his wish to keep the position for the next four years. Other contenders for the leadership include Abdul Jalil Khalil and Abdali Mohammad Hassan, both of whom had strong influences in the last four years.

Businessmen and technocrats are openly keen on positions of influence both in the speakership authority and as heads of permanent parliamentary committees.

Al Asala, one of the major losers in the elections, is expected to lobby for support from independent lawmakers to keep its chairman Ganem Al Bu Ainain as a Deputy Speaker.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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