Watchdog warns of vote-buying in Kuwait election


‘There has been a steep rise in the use of political money in the current elections,’ the deputy chairman of the Amman-based Elections Network in the Arab Region (ENAR), Anwar al-Rasheed, told a press conference.

‘In this election, the use of money is clear’ for vote-buying, said Rasheed, who is a Kuwaiti activist. ‘Authorities are not doing enough to stop it.’

He warned that vote-buying could have serious consequences on Kuwait and allow regional and international interference in the outcome.

In last year’s election, police detained several people for alleged vote-buying for former MP Jamal al-Omar, who was later cleared of all charges and is running again.

Local media and candidates allege that certain wealthy candidates standing in the election have been paying thousands of dollars for each vote.

Rasheed said his group has 30 local monitors for the Kuwaiti election, although the government has not given its authorisation.

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