By Abdel Razek Abdallah
ALGIERS (AA) – The Algerian parliament on Wednesday elected Mouad Bouchareb as a new speaker for the assembly in a session boycotted by opposition parties.
Bouchareb was nominated for the post on Tuesday by Algeria’s ruling National Liberation Front (NLF).
He was the sole nominee for the post and he secured the support of Algeria’s National Rally for Democracy, the Tajamou Amel el-Djazair, the Algerian Popular Movement and a parliamentary bloc of independent MPs.
Along with the NLF, the four political blocs hold a combined 232 out of 462 seats in parliament, ensuring an easy majority for the ruling party’s candidate.
In his speech after being elected, Bouchareb, 47, who hails from Algeria’s Setif province, thanked Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika and NLF head for placing trust in him for the post.
Meanwhile, opposition political parties boycotted the session, citing what they describe as the “illegal” ouster of former speaker of parliament Said Bouhadja last month after a dispute with lawmakers.
According to the Algerian Constitution, the speaker of parliament can be only replaced in case of death, resignation or medical disability.
Bouhadja refused to resign and told local media that he is “still the legitimate chairman of the assembly”.
He had stirred significant controversy due to his decision to sack Bachir Slimani, secretary-general of the assembly.