عربي

Ebrahim Sharif:My Position regarding the Regime
Categary : إبراهيم شريف

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ابراهيم السيد 2016-02-20 10:56:44




 

 

(1) It seems that the Public Prosecution confuses the difference between the concept of the "regime" (or the "political system") and that of the "executive power" (or the "government"). The regime is the overall system of governance that includes the King, the three main branches of governance, the very principles of the democratic system, the Constitution, the law, the fourth branch of governance (i.e. the press) and the fifth branch (i.e. the political parties and civil societies). The executive power constitutes only one part of these diverse pillars of the regime. A discussion about this particular power, therefore, does not mean a discussion about the whole regime.

 

(2) The principles on which the Bahraini regime stands are based on Article (120) of the Constitution. This article permits the modification of any of the provisions of the constitution, except for amending Article (2) regarding the religion and language of the country, the hereditary monarchy system, the two-chambers system, and the principles of freedom and equality. Any other provision is amendable and changeable through legitimate means.

 

(3) The National Democratic Action Society "Waad" and other opposition societies recognized these fundamentals and indeed registered under the Political Associations Law and ran in parliamentary elections.

 

(4) Therefore, the legitimacy of the regime is not in doubt here. The problem lies in the fact that the practices of governance on the ground are not in line with the objectives of the democratic system. Constitutions and laws provide the base and roots to people’s rights but, unfortunately, they do not guarantee them. Instead, the continuity of political struggle and sacrifices for the sake of freedom and equality is what ensures that the practice on the ground matches the words in the text. The struggle of black-Americans in the United States and of women all over the world for their full political rights are the biggest examples that such struggles exist even after the establishment of a constitution.

 

(5) The opposition has been accused from time to time that it works on overthrowing the regime, but the truth is far from it. For more than a quarter century after the dissolution of the National Assembly in 1975, the opposition demanded the reinstatement of the constitution and made great sacrifices for it.

 

(6) In my speech at Al-Hija Maatam, I mentioned the word "government" 37 times, and the "regime" only twice. The intention, as was clearly understood, was to talk about the government. Nowhere in this speech have I called for the imposition of constitutional amendments or for regime change by force or illegal means, as the Prosecution alleges. The charge of “inciting to overthrow the regime by illegal means” has no basis whatsoever.

 
 
 
 
 

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