NSC will be accountable to Lower House, gov’t to issue its regualtion — Maaytah

2. NSC
Minister of Political and Parliamentary Affairs, Musa Al-Maaytah. (Photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — Three days after it was approved by the Lower House, the National Security Council (NSC) continues to stir controversy among lawmakers, public figures, and pundits over its make-up, authority and accountability, and whether its duties will be outlined by a law or a regulation. Even after the government and the Legal Committee gave some explanations about the proposed council there is still some ambiguity surrounding the role His Majesty will play and who the council will be accountable to. However, it is still not clear how this new body will function and what responsibilities it will hold. اضافة اعلان

Minister of Political and Parliamentary Affairs, Musa Al-Maaytah, told Jordan News that the new council will not strip the government of its powers or compete with it. The NSC will be specialized in internal security and foreign policy.

“The council will meet when necessary by a call from the King or someone he authorizes. It has nothing to do with the executive authority,” Maaytah said.

A regulation will be issued by the government to explain its tasks and procedures, Maaytah said adding that the council can be held accountable by the Lower House since the prime minister, foreign minister, interior minister, defense minister will be members of the council, all of whom can be held accountable by parliament.

Lawmaker Saleh Al-Armouti believes that the council counteracts the reform plans as that it will strip the government of its powers. He explained that setting up another supreme body would lead constitutional rifts and would change the definition of Jordan’s political system.

However, MP Tamam Al-Riyati believes that the council will improve political stability and national security. She considers it as a guarantor for a collaboration between the political and security bodies.

Former director of the Center for Strategic Studies and professor of Sociology at the University of Jordan, Musa Shteiwi, told Jordan News that the council is a body of authority that exists in many countries. Jordan is in a transitional phase since there are changes in the executive and legislative structures, he explained. “We all know how carrying out reform is a tough and not everyone agrees on how to do it,” he said. However, university professor and geopolitical analyst and columnist Amer Al-Sabaileh told Jordan News that he does not see this new body as a unique event to the political sphere since the country has been run this way for the past era. “It is making the current reality constitutional. The National Policies Council and the Royal Court both have big powers and authority. So I don’t think there’s any change,” Sabaileh told Jordan News.

But he added that creating such a council will weaken future governments. This is because governments can only be stronger when they are directly held accountable and run through transparent and independent policies that are not influenced by other powers. “The current status quo and the increase of power centers and making them constitutional means that we are going towards weaker governments,” Sabaileh said.

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