Former President Amine Gemayel called on both the president and the prime minister-designate to restore their prerogatives and cut loose from the conditions being imposed by local factions, deeming this as the only way to get out of the government formation stalemate.
“It is as if the government is a slice of cheese waiting to be eaten. When consensus is not reached between parties, the president and PM-designate must form a government that takes into consideration specific ministerial appointment criteria," Gemayel told Al-Akhbar newspaper.
“It is fine even if this leads to the formation of a de-facto government should no agreement is reached on a national unity government. What is needed now is to pull the country out of this bottleneck and vacuum,” he said.
Gemayel said that no one wants to admit the close connection between external axes and internal matters, adding that there has always been an intermingling between strategic foreign interests and domestic issues.
“Despite its small size, Lebanon remains a major focus point in the region, getting affected by regional conflicts and the axes game which is likely to witness more developments and fluctuations in the next few months. There is someone who always wants to set his foothold in this country,” Gemayel explained.
“Moreover, there are internal factors that are based on two elements: to seize the majority of the Cabinet seats so as to control the vote when needed, and to get hold of the obstructive third to overthrow the government since it would not be possible to do so arbitraly."
Gemayel criticized President Michel Aoun for being biased in the government formation process, saying that the latter is not playing a neutral role as he is supposed to.
“President Aoun is not being neutral. This is clear as he is not distinguishing between his ministerial share and the one allocated to the Free Patriotic Movement. I would have preferred that he rises above
political bickering and detaches himself from all parties."
"The president’s share should be non-partisan and not part of any party’s quota," he concluded.