Berri Says Formation of Technocrats Govt. 'Not an Option'
As the country grapples with nationwide protests now demanding the formation of a technocratic government, Speaker Nabih Berri said forming a cabinet of purely technocrat figures was off the table, al-Joumhouria daily reported on Wednesday.
“We have to form a political-technocratic government. A purely technocrat cabinet is out of the question,” Berri said in remarks to the daily.
Berri reiterated: “In general we back a government of technocrats and politicians, it won’t matter if the number of politicians were more or less than the number of technocrats, it is crucial that the government be formed to proceed and rescue the country.
Asked who would he name for the premiership during the binding parliamentary consultations with the President, he said: “We will make our position clear at the consultations, and of course we have to see the (nominee’s) work plan.”
The name of Samir Khatib, the director general of the Khatib & Alami engineering firm, emerged Tuesday as a strong candidate for the PM post.
He announced that he is willing to form the new government should there be “consensus” on his nomination.
Caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri openly declared Tuesday that he is withdrawing his candidacy for the premiership.
The announcement comes nearly a month after he resigned amid ongoing protests as well as a severe economic and financial crisis.
The nationwide anti-government protests erupted on October 17 and have since targeted corruption and mismanagement by the country's ruling elite.