Another Shura Council in Bahrain: King Takes over What's Left of Constitution and Parliament

2022-10-27 - 9:43 p

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): With a signature and one royal decree, the King of Bahrain oversteps constitutional articles, rendering them mere ink on paper. With one royal decree, the king transformed the House of Representatives into a second Shura Council.

The royal decree issued on Sunday (October 23, 2022) amended 15 provisions of the internal regulations of the House of Representatives, adding to them what was missing.

To avoid confusion, these new amendments are separate from the amendments approved by the 2018 House of Representatives on April 20, 2020, when its members agreed to significantly reduce their powers, especially in the field of discussion of general topics. 

The king's amendments and additions to the regulations withdrew obvious powers from the MPs, and gave broad powers to the speaker of the House of Representatives and to the government at the expense of the House of Representatives, noting that the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives, although elected, is not controlled by the Royal Court in terms of determining its MPs.

These changes practically disrupted Article 32 of the Constitution, which states: "The system of government rests on a separation of the legislative, executive and judicial authorities." However, through his decree, the king took powers from the legislative authority and gave them to the government, and to the speaker of the House of Representatives, who, since 2002, has become a puppet in the hands of the Royal Court as we saw in the eras of Khalifa Al-Dhahrani, Ahmed Al-Mulla, and Fawzia Zainal.

The King's amendments practically eliminated the value of Chapter III of the Constitution, which centers on the legislative authority. It is true that the members of the House of Representatives are elected through an unfair voting process, however, the result of the King's amendments made the House of Representatives similar to the Shura Council, a council that can only amend its regulations in a backward trend and relinquish its powers. Then, the king comes and steals the rest of the powers and makes the MPs just statues sitting on their seats without powers, authority or ability to hold the government accountable. These amendments were made to make MPs just mere observers sitting before the Speaker of the Council. 

Arabic Version