| 24 May 2024, Friday |

PM Mikati: I urge the Information Minister to act in accordance with his ethics, prioritize national interest

Prime Minister Najib Mikati has urged the Minister of Information to act with conscience, reconsider the situation, and take the necessary action. He stated that whomever believes that obstructing and increasing ceilings is the solution is erroneous.

His position was taken from the Serail, and the following is the text of his speech:

We’re all here today to celebrate the debut of the winter tourist package, which is the result of collaboration between the Ministry of Tourism and Middle East Airlines. This project provides a ray of optimism in the midst of the numerous obstacles that our country and people face on all levels, and it brings hope that, no matter how terrible the trials may be, we will be able to rise again, and that Lebanon will be stronger than any storm.

After months of disruption, delay, and missed opportunities, we announced that we would launch a workshop to promote cooperation with international bodies and the International Monetary Fund, in addition to holding parliamentary elections, which is the most visible benefit that the Lebanese and society aspire to, because it will define the country’s actual path following the events that occurred on October 17th, 2019.

And because we believe that rescue cannot be an individual responsibility, we called the government “Together to Rescue” in an explicit call to all Lebanese parties and components participating in the government, or those outside the government, to work together for the rescue.

We believed that the painful reality that our country is going through would push everyone to transcend the narrow accounts and considerations, and to actively participate in the rescue operation, but this matter unfortunately did not happen.

After a month in office, we faced our first test at the cabinet table, with the goal of persuading the government to intervene via a judicial order that had nothing to do with it, despite the negative impact on Lebanon’s reputation, the judiciary, and, as a result, government stability.

From here, we’ve established the principles by which we approach any legal case, based on an awareness of the circumstances that led to this point.

We did everything we could to keep the judicial file on the Beirut port explosion in the hands of the judiciary, and we refused to interfere with it, focusing on correcting the abuses of power committed by the judicial investigator, particularly in the matter of summoning Presidents and Ministers for trial entrusted in conformity with Article 80 of the Constitution in Parliament.

In this context, I would like to affirm the following:

The country is not governed in defiance and arrogance, but in a common language that pulls Lebanese together and unifies them to rescue their country, and anyone who believes he can impose his opinion on the pulpits through disturbance and verbal escalation is misguided.

Those who believe they can lead the Lebanese to make decisions that are unrelated to their Arab history and depth, as well as their tight ties at all levels with Arab countries and Gulf states in particular, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in particular, are mistaken.

Whoever believes that, at a time when certain reforms are still unfolding, he can overturn the constitution and return the country to a cycle of internal warfare and divides for which we are currently paying a high price, is misguided.

On the other hand, there are a few topics on which I’d want to make a point, and I hope that some of you will comprehend the road map that I’ve decided to take in order to make government work successful and promote the country, which is stated as follows:

The Council of Ministers is the natural place to discuss all files and issues that concern the government, away from dictates, challenges, loud voices, and the use of threat language. The Council of Ministers will never be a place to interfere in any matter that does not concern the government, specifically the work of the judiciary.

All ministers must commit to ministerial solidarity and adhere to the ministerial statement’s provisions, which sets the fundamental rules for the government’s work and policy. Everything that is said outside these constants is rejected and does not bind the government to anything.

We are determined to deal with the file of the relationship with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the sisterly Gulf states according to sound rules. We will never leave this file open to political ramblings, and we will seek, in cooperation with all the faithful, to return from the decisions taken in a way that restores the smoothness of Lebanese relations with its natural Arab extension.

In this context also, I urge the Information Minister to act in accordance with his ethics, take the necessary steps, and prioritize the national interest; I trust his patriotic instincts to protect the interests of Lebanese living in Lebanon and abroad, rather than to harm the government.

The positions of the Information Minister have led to a boycott by Saudi Arabia and the Gulf, and I believe that the country is run in a common language that brings the Lebanese together and unites them to save their country; whoever believes that he can impose his opinion on escalation and distance Lebanon from the Arabs is mistaken.

Before deciding the final word on every topic that we have committed to discuss entirely, we have meetings and separate meetings that shall be held. Everyone should join us in this much-needed rescue mission.

Let us come up with a common name that protects the Lebanese and the cedars’ country, and let us all avoid the paradoxes.

This is the only method to solve the problem, and there is no other option. Let’s cut the time and distance it takes to get to the desired productive task. God be with us!

  • Sawt Beirut International