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Tue 3 Jun 2014 02:35 PM

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Former MP slams Bahraini Parliament as 'powerless'

Ibrahim Busandal urges Sunni political groups to 'think twice' before contesting the upcoming elections

Former MP slams Bahraini Parliament as 'powerless'

A former Bahraini MP has branded the country’s Parliament powerless as he urged Sunni political groups to "think twice" before contesting the upcoming elections, it was reported.

Al Asala Islamic Society senior member Ibrahim Busandal said there was no point in representing the public in parliament because it was “powerless”, Gulf Daily News reported.

He said the societies should consider boycotting the polls, which are expected to take place in mid-November, if the government failed to grant parliament more decision-making powers.

“Unless parliament has power, support from the government and respect of the ministers then there is no point in becoming people's representatives,” he told the newspaper.

“Study well and consider all options available and then decide on the polls.”

Busandal said he had suggested reforms to the Al Asala bloc six years ago but they were never considered.

“Our reasonable share in decision-making is being denied, which seriously calls for thinking in terms of a boycott,” he was quoted as saying.

“We are not asking for the impossible, it is our right to be part of policy making in the country - be it financial or others.”

On Saturday, a coalition of five opposition societies, headed by Al Wefaq National Islamic Society, announced they would boycott the parliamentary and municipal elections.

The decision was based on the government’s alleged failure to deal with several issues, including ending the political crisis, distribution of electoral districts and vesting parliament with more powers, Gulf Daily News reported.