Societies’ elections pact under threat Poor Arabic may hit poll 5

Gulf Daily News
Sunday, 19th October 2014
Email: [email protected]
pact under threat
89 hopefuls register on the fourth day
filed their nominations for next
month’s elections on the second
last day of registration, yester- ing his membership in the society by running in Northern
Seventeen parliamentary and Governorate’s first constituen10 municipal council candi- cy, which covers Maqsha, Hedates registered in the Northern lat Al Abd Saleh, Bahrain Fort
Governorate, five parliamenta- village, Karranah, Janusan,
ry and nine municipal hopefuls Barbar, Jid Al Haj and parts of
in Muharraq Governorate, 22 Duraz.
But the 62-year-old banker
will run for parliament in the
told the GDN that he
thought it was imin the Southern
portant to be part of
Governorate 17
the system.
“Boycotting is not
and nine municithe solution, instead
pal prospects regwe should demand
our rights from
within the system,”
would-be candihe said after filing
dates had their
his nomination at
nominations reShaikh Mohammed
jected for want
bin Khalifa Intermeof correct docudiate School.
mentation or for
“I am a member
not meeting other
of Al Wefaq, but my
criteria, such as
n Mr Nabil
nomination is filed as
fluency in Arabic.
Today is the final day for pro- an independent.
“I believe it is my responspective MPs and councillors to
register their interest in running sibility to be representing
my people, if they give me a
for next month’s election.
The country’s four registra- chance.
“I do not know about the
tion centres will be open from
competition or my winning
5pm to 9pm.
Meanwhile, a member of Al chances yet.”
Al Wefaq secretary general
Wefaq National Islamic Society
filed his nomination to run for Shaikh Ali Salman said yesterparliament yesterday, defying day evening that any member
opposition calls to boycott next violating the society’s boycott
decisions faces immediate
month’s elections.
Mirza Ahmed Nabil is risk- dismissal.
n A candidate files his nomination papers
“Any member who violates
any resolution taken by the society, will be dismissed from
the society,” he said on his official Twitter account.
Mr Nabil said he knew about
this statement, but “will have to
wait and see what will happen”.
“I have not heard anything in
person on this,” he said
“But I firmly believe that
boycotting is not a solution.”
Meanwhile, former Muharraq municipal councillor
Mohammed Al Wazzan – standing for election in Muharraq’s
constituency seven – predicted
that opposition members would
start filing their nominations today, the last day possible.
“We received information
Poor Arabic may hit poll
hopes of four candidates
POOR Arabic could thwart the chances of four
prospective parliamentary candidates in the
Northern Governorate after they were found to
struggle pronouncing certain words.
Supervisory centre head judge Hameed Habeeb found that the candidates’ Arabic was “very
poor” and that they failed to provide any certificates to prove their level of education.
“They all underwent an Arabic exam but it
seems they all had difficulties in pronouncing
words,” he said.
“The results are not in yet, but it doesn’t look
too positive for them.
One of the candidates, Ali Yusuf Ebrahim,
told the GDN he made a mistake in two of the
words in the exam and did not have a college
“If I knew I had to be fluent in Arabic, I would
have studied before I came here,” he said.
Another election hopeful, Abduljalil Ahmed
Ali, had his application rejected as his name did
not appear on the electoral roll – despite him already having paid his registration fees.
“We had a person who we rejected because his
name was not registered,” said Mr Habeeb.
“He paid BD300 in fees but we could not accept him as a candidate because it is the rules that
you have to be registered, before you can possibly become a candidate.
Mr Ali, who was hoping to represent the governorate’s eighth constituency in Hamad Town,
said he was frustrated at being rejected.
“They told me my name is not recorded as a
candidate but they took BD300,” he said.
“I brought my passport, CPR and everything,
but still I was rejected.
“I told them I want my money back but they
didn’t give it to me, so I told the judge that he
was not a professional, but he said that he had
Meanwhile, up to four candidates in the Muharraq Governorate have had their nomination
papers rejected after failing in a literacy test.
Supervisory centre head judge Ibrahim Al
Zayed told the GDN that candidates were asked
to do reading and writing tests if they had not
included education certificates in their application.
Among them was a female hopeful who was
also rebuked for refusing to remove her niqab
(full-face veil) for reasons of identification.
“Let’s pretend that she is contesting with another female candidate and both are wearing
niqab, how can people differentiate between
them?” asked Mr Al Zayed.
All rejected candidates will have until Wednesday to file an objection against the judges’ decisions.
that some members of opposition groups will file their
nominations on the last day,”
he said, adding that there was
a “high possibility” that parlia- sition Parties – signed a
ment might be dissolved if the declaration last week outmajor opposition groups later lining their intent to spurn
decided to take part.
next month’s polls.
“Even if the opposition
It follows an earlier angroups do now
show up on the last
made in May,
day, I am sure in
that they would
the next six months
we will see some
elections bechanges in parliacause of the
ment – there is a
high possibility it
failcould happen.”
ure to deal
of Al Wefaq, the
issues includDemocratic Proing claims of
gressive Tribune,
political natthe National Demuralisation,
ocratic Action Sodistribution of
ciety (Wa’ad), Al
n Mr Al Wazzan
electoral disEkha National Sotricts and vestciety and the National Demo- ing parliament with more
cratic Assembly – who refer to powers.
themselves collectively as the n Vote campaign – Page 6
National Democratic Oppo- n Letters – Pages 8-9