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Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Candidate registration for Qatar’s Shura Council election kicks off


Applications for candidate registration for Qatar’s Shura Council elections will run from Sunday to Thursday.

The Supervisory Committee for the Shura Council elections will begin receiving  registration for candidates of the upcoming vote, authorities confirmed, marking the second phase of the electoral process in the Gulf state.

The applications for registration of candidates will run for five days from Sunday to Thursday.

The committee stressed that candidates must respect provisions of the constitution. According to the rules in place, it is forbidden for candidates to organise and hold election meetings, give speeches, place posters, advertisements or pictures in educational facilities and government buildings.

The final list of candidates will be announced on September 15, after which the election campaign will begin. The campaigns will end 24 hours before the start of voting process.

This comes as authorities on Sunday announced the election will officially be held on 2 October 2021.

Qatari citizens will be able to vote for a total of 30 members out of the 45 in a general ballot, with Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani selecting the remaining 15.

The elected Shura Council will have legislative authority and will be able to approve general state policies and their budgets. It will also exercise control over the executive, except for bodies defining defence, security, economic, and investment policy.

During a Qatar TV programmer, lawyer Youssef Al Zaman advised voters to look at the candidates’ lists, attend their meetings, read their programmes, and then determine the best in representing the public interest and interest of the state.

Read also: Sheikh Khalifa meets tribal elders as election law protests subside

“They must monitor the candidates and compare their electoral programmes and then choose the most qualified ones,” said Al Zaman.

The lawyer also noted that, regarding the candidates’ campaigning budget, “the candidate must open a bank account through which he spends on electoral campaigns with an amount not exceeding QAR 2 million and the candidate may receive support from the community at a rate not exceeding 35 percent of the two million riyals.”

On Saturday, the committee stopped receiving objection and grievance requests against the preliminary voter lists in the electoral headquarters. The final voter lists will be announced on Sunday.

Who can be nominated?

Candidates must be originally Qatari and aged 30 and above by the closing date of the nomination. They must also be fluent in reading and writing in Arabic.

If the first requirements are met, nominees can be registered in their electoral district and must then continue to maintain good reputation and conduct while keeping their criminal record clean.

Those who hold ministerial and military positions – state, judicial bodies, ministers of state, Central Municipal Council – cannot nominate themselves.

Candidates working at ministries or other government entities whose names are included in the final lists of candidates are given unpaid leave throughout the elections if they do not have a sufficient leave balance.

Candidates have the freedom to withdraw their nomination seven days ahead of the election day by submitting a form to the committee.

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