Gemayel Condemns Legal Violation as Parliament Approves Electricity Plan

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Gemayel Condemns Legal Violation as Parliament Approves Electricity Plan

Kataeb leader Samy Gemayel on Wednesday deplored the Parliament's endorsement of the electricity plan despite its flaws, saying that lawmakers have failed to abide by their own legislations.

The Parliament approved legislation necessary to kick off the implementation of the government's power plan, thus extending Law 288 which grants the Cabinet a three-year full power award permits and licenses to produce electricity.

"What happened today is a complete violation of the Lebanese Constitution since the 2017 Public-Private Partnership Law (PPP) is supposed to manage any tendering process carried out in the electricity sector, and, therefore, annuls all previous legislations," Gemayel told reporters following the Parliament session.

“Failing to abide by the PPP law and the public accountability law have led to legal vacuum in the tendering process,” Gemayel said.

“Hastiness does not justify the disrespect of the legal norms endorsed by the Parliament,” he stressed. “We do not legislate so that we end up disregarding our legislations; unfortunately, this is what happened today."

By extending Law 288, Gemayel noted, there is no legal constraints controlling the tendering process which will be based on political discretion.

"The Energy Ministry has been given some sort of green light to do whatever it wishes to; all that is left from the Tenders Department's role in such a process is only the building,” he noted.

“The Energy Ministry will be in charge of setting the tender rulebook and will be supervising all the stages of the process. It is responsible of the technical committee which can reject any offer that it does not like."

“The Energy Ministry has been given absolute powers that are not subject to the legal tendering mechanisms," Gemayel warned. "This will lead to major problems that we will not keep mum about it."