Salam Stresses Consensus Best Option in Decision-Making

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Prime Minister Tammam Salam said Thursday that the activation of the government's work hinges on the readiness of the different factions to serve citizens, calling on ministers to abide by the agreement to have consensus on cabinet decisions.

Salam told cabinet ministers that consensus among them is the best option in the absence of a president, Information Minister Ramzi Jreij said following a cabinet session.

The PM reiterated his call on the importance of election a president, Jreij told reporters.

Salam had earlier told As Safir daily that “the activation of the cabinet's work in the next stage depends on the readiness of the political parties represented in the government to learn from the lessons of the previous paralyzed situation.”

He called on the ministers to “behave based on the lessons learned and to serve the interests of the Lebanese that can no longer tolerate any paralysis.”

The prime minister also hoped the cabinet ministers “would be wise enough to cross this stage with the least possible losses.”

His remark came as the cabinet resumed its sessions after a two-week standstill.

Salam had warned that he would no longer call for sessions if the ministers did not heed his call to amend the controversial working mechanism that was adopted after the rival MPs failed to elect a successor to President Michel Suleiman last year.

But Salam decided to call for a session on Thursday after the different factions agreed for consensus to be the basis of the government’s work rather than the unanimous support from all the ministers on cabinet decisions.

In his remarks to As Safir, he stressed that “there is a difference between the consensus that we should seek for and the unanimity that could lead to paralysis.”

Thursday's session tackled several issues from the agenda of the Feb. 12. session and took several decisions, Jreij said.

He expected the cabinet to discuss the appointment of the members Banking Control Commission of Lebanon (BCCL) next week.

The commission’s term expires on March 11.



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