The Web

Articles & Analyses

The Decisions of PCC and the Necessities of the New National Council
By: Moatasem Hamadeh
March 5, 2018

If the Palestinian Authority's institutions had a Supreme Constitutional Court, it would have been possible to refer the speech of President of PA in the Security Council (on February 20, 2018) to the court, and to question him about the constitutionality of the proposals, ideas, positions and initiatives that came in the speech. However, the judiciary in the PA remains subordinate to the political administration, adheres to its positions, and has not yet had the degree of independence that enables it to be free from political pressures and to issue impartial just judgments. Many incidents may confirm the validity of our opinion, especially if we review a number of judicial facts in which the Palestinian West Bank continues to suffer from its negative repercussions.

If the Constitutional Court, which we aspire to exist one day, President’s speech on February 20 could have been put on the table to be investigated, and conduct a free just political discussion on it, and demonstrate the extent of its commitment to Palestinian legitimacy, as drawn by national institutions, especially the Palestinian Central Council in its last two sessions (March 5, 2015 and January 15, 2018) and the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization, then the PA President could have been questioned about the source of his powers and whether the powers are without limits, without rules and without institutional legal reference, especially as he should have sworn, when he took power to abide by the laws and not to violate them or get over them.

The issue is that we have compared the Security Council's speech with the decisions of the Central Council, so we found it contrary to it and not abide by it, and we found the “initiative” in it against the decisions of the PCC, but it is in line with the obligations of Oslo Accords and the references to them and their provisions were clear and explicit.

Therefore any Palestinian citizen, as well as any observer, has the right to ask on behalf of whom the speech in the Security Council was delivered? And who is the official body that drafted, discussed or approved it? Especially that it was not presented to the PCC or to the Executive Committee or to the Fatah Central Committee itself.

The irony is that while ignoring and marginalizing the national institution, especially the PCC, and its decisions, the Executive Committee and its decisions, the Palestinian official leadership is in a hurry to convene the Palestinian National Council, with its longstanding form. The last meeting of this Council was held in 1996 under a deep Palestinian division, which was caused by going to Oslo from behind the institutions, factions and people, consequently, under the divisions, it was amended by individual decisions without consultation with the factions without any respect for the principles of the National Coalition and partners.

The call to the old National Council, in itself, is a marginalization to the preparatory committee, held in Beirut and Amman, and all preparatory work under the chairmanship of the head of the Council, AL-Zanon, to rebuild a new national council by free and fair elections according to the full proportional representation law, where it could be a framework for all segments of the Palestinian people.

It is clear to us that the logic (that led to the speech in the Security Council which overstepped the positions of national consensus, to the policy of exclusivity and individuality, the policy of one opinion and the policy of violating the principles of national unity) is the same logic that insists on an old national council, that symbols to division, and insist on the exclusion of elections that would rebuild the institution on a democratic basis away from the policy of hegemony and exclusivity of decision.

Thus, in the Palestinian case, in our national battle against the occupation, we are engaged in internal battles, through frameworks and in the field, in order to achieve the decisions of the institutions, but at the same time realizing that the language of national unity, coalition and partnership, cannot have victory without making broad democratic reforms to the institution, or without leaving the authoritarian policy, based on the guarantee of individual hegemony, the domination of the institutions, and turning them into empty structures of their content.

The national institutions, with their current form, are the product of a political phase in the Palestinian situation that is over. They are institutions whose compositions were made by authoritarian decisions in a divisive context, in which the official leadership wanted to guarantee the “numerical majority” for its decisions, although this “majority” does not constitute a “political majority”. The numerical majority is a fabricated majority whose goal is to ensure the official leadership’s control over the institutions, if there is voting. As for the “political majority”, it is the majority, based on national consensus. An example is the 2006 National Accord Document, which was a great title for the political majority. On the other hand, the Oslo Accords represented a miserable title for the “numerical majority”, a majority that was mobilized in the National Council in 1996, in Gaza, in the presence of former US President Clinton to abolish the PLO's National Charter.

Thus, what the official leadership aspires to repeat in the old national council, is to ensure that the old one stays on its position, to ensure that the dominance of the numerical majority prevails over the political majority and to ensure the survival and perpetuation of the policy of exclusiveness and individuality, and evasion from obstacles of the institution and its decisions.

What happened in the Security Council is one of the bad consequences of this miserable institutional reality in the Palestinian situation.

It is regrettable, for example, that more than one member of the Central Council and of the Executive Committee, who voted in favor of the decisions of the Central Council at its last session, praised the speech and the initiative included in it, in the Security Council, although it is based on Oslo Accords, and calling to complete Oslo negotiations, and ignore the decision of the Central Council to disengage from these Accords with their old negotiating formula, in favor of a new formula, adopted and sponsored by the United Nations and its resolutions, related to the Palestinian national issue and rights.

What is regrettable in the same context, that such behavior is “normal” in Palestinian political structure, tends where the official Palestinian leadership tends, without minimum regard to the public opinion, and to people's feelings and minds.

Such unwise policies in drawing positions and decisions have caused the loss of confidence between the street and its official leadership, and the Palestinian institution.

These policies also have caused uncertainty about the seriousness of the official leadership in confronting Trump's decisions and Israeli policies.

For example, many commented on the Central council decisions at its last session as only words; and depended on this to their experience with the decisions of the “Central Council” in the previous session (5/3/2015).

We do not exaggerate if we say that most Palestinians do not show any interest in the meetings of the Executive Committee, because they believe, which is a correct belief, that if it holds a meeting, it will not result any decisions, and that if it takes a decision, it will remain as a dead letter.

As a synopsis, the battle for the defense of the land, the people, and the homeland; is itself the battle of safeguarding the decisions of the national institution and fighting for its execution; as well as it is the same as the battle for democratic reform of the national institution, by free and democratic elections, under the law of full proportional representation, to reconsider the street, as the decision maker, and to end the policy of exclusivity and individuality, as the speech of Security Council was one of its bitter results.

Moatasem Hamadeh is a member of the Political Bureau of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Translated by: Rasha Abo Allan
Revised by: Ibrahim Motlaq

Share |
copyright © 2004 - dflp-palestine.net