Hasbani: Cabinet formation obstacle a battle of powers between Presidency & Premiership

Caretaker Deputy Prime Minister, Public Health Minister Ghassan Hasbani considered Saturday that the obstacles standing in the way of forming the new cabinet denote a "battle of powers" between the Republic Presidency and Premiership.

Speaking in an interview to "Radio Free Lebanon" this morning, Hasbani said that "the government formation is an internal matter but is somewhat affected by foreign developments, and is subject to internal discussions that we do not hear about in the media."

"The main obstacle in the cabinet formation is the conflict over the powers between the Presidency and the Premiership, and not in giving a certain ministerial portfolio to a particular team," he explained.

Hasbani stressed on the essential role that must be played by the Prime Minister-designate in this respect.

"What we see today is that a certain party wants to reach the government with a large team, which undermines the essence and prerogatives of the cabinet formation," he added.

"Hezbollah gave its opinion like the rest of the politicians, and the decision is now in the hands of the PM-designate," Hasbani went on. He indicated that PM-designate Saad Hariri "is dealing with the various parties in an equal manner to reach a homogeneous government that enjoys a genuine partnership, and one that can restore stability to Lebanon and neutralize regional conflicts."

"Speeding-up the cabinet formation depends on the level of wisdom of various parties...We are still dwelling on the basic crusts, and the subject of agreement on the sizes and distribution of portfolios plays an important role in the formation of the government," Hasbani underscored.

Source: National News Agency