Lebanon’s Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri vowed to form a government of specialists that will be named by key political parties , local media reported.
Local television channel MTV quoted unnamed sources as saying: “The possibility of forming the government this week has been ruled out since Hezbollah is clinging to the health portfolio, which is also demanded by the Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Joumblatt.”
Hariri initially planned to form a 14 member cabinet of technocrats but since he has to appease all the poly]tical parties he is now talking about a 20 to 24 member cabinet .
Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea on Monday predicted that the new government that will be formed by Hariri will be, a waste of time , similar to the failed cabinet of outgoing PM Hassan Diab.
During an interview with Radio Free Lebanon, Geagea said the Lebanese Forces will only grant its vote of confidence to “a government of real independents formed of competent ministers who are specialist and know exactly what to do .”
“But it seems that there is no hope in this (new) government, because its formation has started by promising the Shiite duo and the Progressive Socialist Party certain portfolios,” Geagea added.
He warned that what happened with the Shiite duo will eventually “apply to the Free Patriotic Movement and others.”
“So how will this government be? At best, it will be similar to (caretaker) PM Hassan Diab’s government, so what would be the result? Nothing but further waste of time,” Geagea said.
Geagea’s comments came a day after Lebanon’s top Christian cleric urged Hariri to avoid secret under the table deals and to quickly form a new government that will start lifting the country out of financial crisis.
“Overcome the conditions and counter-conditions of the political groups, avoid the quagmire of interests…Beware of secret bilateral deals and promises,”Rai told Hariri on Sunday.
Hariri was not nominated for the PM job by Lebanon’s two main Christian blocs: the Free Patriotic Movement, led by President Michel Aoun’s son-in-law, and the Lebanese Forces led by Aoun’s civil war rival Geagea
It appears that Hariri has not learned any lessons and is heading in the same direction as Diab . Any such cabinet as Diab’s is doomed to fail according to observers, since it will be unable to deliver the reforms needed to rescue the country from total financial collapse
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