Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri surprised the parliament before the general public by calling for a session to elect the president on short notice of just 48 hours.
What is surprising about Berri’s call is that it contradicts what he had announced in a parliament session that he will not call for an election session unless a semi-consensus is reached.
This is what Berri said to MP Yacoubian in the budget discussion session on September 15: “This is my authority, and I appreciate that when there is some consensus, I will call for a session when I find some agreement, not consensus. This is what I said in my speech (in Tyre) and I am saying it now.”
However, what is remarkable about this call for observers is that it dropped the possibility of presenting the Lebanese army chief, Joseph Aoun, as a possible candidate for the presidency.
The nomination of the army chief needs a constitutional amendment to enable the parliament to elect him as president. With the parliament turning into an “electoral body” that could not legislate, amending the constitution became impossible, thus closing the door on the army chief, at least until the end of President Michel Aoun‘s term and the fall of the constitutional deadlines.
Related: Lebanon’s Parliament Failed To Vote For A President