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Baabda presidential chair  awaits the new occupant of the palace . Lebanon has been without a president since May 25th 2014
Baabda presidential chair awaits the new occupant of the palace . Lebanon has been without a president since May 25th 2014

By :Nayla Tueni

Lebanon still suffers from a presidential vacuum as it marks its 72nd Independence Day this week. The country is like an old man no longer capable of keeping up with ordinary life. State institutions’ work is almost at a standstill, there has been no president since 2014, the government is paralyzed, and parliament only convenes when necessary. Meanwhile, people suffer as problems such as the trash crisis remain unsolved.

Dialogue has failed to agree on how to constitutionally run state affairs. Instead, politicians argue over an electoral law and the Syrian crisis. Electing a president will not protect us from terrorism, but it will reflect a domestic consensus and garner foreign support. This is what Lebanon needs to confront difficulties regarding security, the economy and society.

Electing a president restores regularity to the work of institutions that have lost citizens’ trust. The cabinet has failed to resolve the trash crisis due to sectarian divisions. Political bickering and pre-conditions continue. One party names a candidate, another vetoes him.

It is all a waste of time, and a violation of the constitution as long as someone obstructs electing a president and boycotts parliamentary sessions on the matter. It is a violation of the independence achieved by our grandparents, who were wiser, more patriotic, and less loyal to foreign parties.

Parties need to stop throwing the ball in each other’s court in an attempt to achieve populist victories. The collapse of the country will hurt everyone.

Al Arabiya

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