Latest News

Latest News…

10 ministers from Al Khalifa in a 21-man cabinet   Ten out of 21 ministers in the latest government reshuffle are from the Al Khalifa family. The “sovereign” ministries have remained in their hands; the prime minister post, the Interior, Foreign and Defence. The remaining 11 ministries were given to the Sunnis (6) and Shia (5). This is in contrast to the norm that had been observed in the seventies by the prime minister. At that time he distributed the 15 ministerial posts equally among the three groups. If anything the new cabinet only confirms the suspicion that Sheikh Hamad’s programme is more dangerous than had been thought. Its composition have several indications. First, the Al Khalifa has retained absolute power in the country for two centuries and are unlikely to loosen their grip on the country. Secondly, they are using sectarianism as a means of wooing supporters. Third, they have continued their programme of serious discrimination on religious grounds. In a country where the indigenous Shia make 70 percent of the population, their share in the cabinet is less than 25 percent. The ministries they hold are marginal ones. It is not yet possible to affirm the extent of the political naturalization process, and how much damage has been done to the delicate religious balance in the country. What is clear, however, is that the Sheikh Hamad has adopted policies that are nothing less than religious and cultural ethnocide against the native Baharna. To cushion the impact of his destructive programme, he has allowed a degree of freedom of expression, while maintaining his grip on the country. The Al Khalifa have subjugated the government system to serve their interests, even if that meant taking outrageous steps. Last week, the Al Khalifa-controlled constitutional court issued a verdict condoning the role played by Sheikh Hamad in legislation. It has ruled that he is empowered to legislate on his own, that his legislation has the power of law, and that he does not have to present this legislation to his bi-cameral legislature. It was a stunning verdict that has left legal experts dumbfounded. It has now become the norm for the Al Khalifa to legislate as they wish, through Sheikh Hamad, protected by the laws and procedures they have imposed on the country. The verdict given by the Al Khalifa-controlled constitutional court will be used to justify the imposition of the 2002 constitution that had replaced the only contractual agreement enshrined in the 1973 constitution. Many Bahraini people are now asking: Is this the democracy that is being propped up by Washington? Is this the long-awaited reforms in the Gulf? The people of Bahrain have long ago rejected the absolute dictatorship of the Al Khalifa. The Western powers are well-advised to distance themselves from this pseudo-democracy, stop supporting these dictators and support the people’s struggle for democracy, justice and the rule of law.    Bahrain Freedom Movement

24th January 2005

Show More

Related Articles

This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.