In a ceremony organized by the Future Movement Sunday evening at the Seaside Pavilion (formerly BIEL) in Central Beirut to announce its electoral candidates in all Lebanese districts, Prime Minister Saad Hariri delivered the following speech:
“We are gathered together today to announce the names of the Future Movement candidates in all Lebanese regions for the parliamentary elections.
First, I want to thank on your behalf all the MPs, members of the Future Bloc, who will not be running this time, for their work and their dignified path in parliament, in the parliamentary bloc and in politics with us.
I want to thank in particular the Head of the Bloc, Premier Fouad Siniora, who chose not to run for elections and who gave for years a brilliant model of the legislator, the Minister, the Prime Minister and the Statesman.
Premier Siniora and all the MPs will stay with us, in the heart of our political path. And we will stay with you, in whatever positions you choose, we will stay together in this great school that you helped establish and build, the school of Martyr Prime Minister Rafic Hariri, the Movement of Rafic Hariri, the Future Movement.
Among the candidates we are announcing today, from all sects, all regions and all social and cultural roots, there are young women and men, there are new faces and there are current MPs asking for your trust once more. They will all be working, hand-in-hand, to serve our people in all of Lebanon, serve Lebanon and the project of the Lebanon, of the future, the Lebanon that we all aspire to and that is worthy of you and us.
The candidates coming from partisan work, from the aspirations of the people and from the supporters of the Movement, together with the candidates who have expertise in politics, legislation, government and administration.
The candidates coming from civil, social, syndical activities, coming from the soreness of people, together with the candidates coming from the business world, from the private initiative and the productive projects.
They will all work as one hand in the electoral campaign and after the campaign, when they reach parliament, in good numbers hopefully, to represent the Future Movement, the Future Movement supporters, and the Future Movement project, for a better Lebanon.
The legitimacy, moderation and coexistence project, the State Project whose constitution, institutions, army, and security forces alone protect Lebanon.
Each one of these candidates is committed to an electoral declaration, printed and distributed to you and to all the Lebanese.
A while ago, you heard the most important points contained therein, on the political, economic and social levels.
This is the national electoral declaration, but each region will have its team of candidates, with its own program, to serve the region and serve you.
But the most important is that each one of us candidates, who are asking for your trust, or your renewed trust, are all committed to the Future Movement’s vision, and the vision of Martyr Prime Minister Rafic Hariri of Lebanon and of our role in Lebanon.
As I said before, we have a project for Lebanon, a project we are working on every day, from all posts, from the ordinary activists in the Future Movement, to the Future Movement cadres, to the Future Movement MPs, the Future Movement ministers, up to the Prime Minister. We are all working to serve you, and to serve a large project, based on the protection, the stability and the security of the country, and the protection of the constitution, freedom, democracy and sovereignty.
A project based on the protection of social security, the national currency, the promotion of the economy, to find employment opportunities for young people in our country.
For this project, we are heading, starting this week, to three international conferences, where we gather the whole world, to protect Lebanon, its security and stability, and to promote its economy and reduce its burdens.
So nobody loses scope, your vote in the elections will be an answer to a simple question: do you want this project to continue?
Because if you give your votes to the Future candidates, who are asking for your trust today, proudly and humbly, you will be giving me, Saad Rafic Hariri, and the Future Movement, a mandate to continue the march, and the ability to continue the project.
If you stay home and do not vote, or vote for other lists, you will be simply voting to stop this project.
The decision is your decision, the answer is your answer, the Movement is your Movement, the candidates are your candidates, and the vote is your vote.
This country is protected by God almighty. The safety of our people, in the middle of the wars surrounding us, is thanks to God Almighty.
After God, the protection, the security, the hope and the future of the country, come from the decisions, positions and constants, that the Future Movement represents, and the Future project. In this sense, the Future Movement is a Talisman (blue bead) that you put in the ballot box, to protect the country. For that reason, our slogan is the protection of Lebanon and the symbol is the Talisman. You will draw the Talisman with your activity, with your energy, with your daily small and large contributions to the electoral machine, in your dialogue with people, in working for each candidate on the Future lists.
Rafic Hariri protected the country with his blood, it is not too much for us to protect it with our votes.
Every vote you cast in these elections, for candidates on the Future lists, is a vote for Rafic Hariri, first of all, for the continuation of the Rafic Hariri project, and a vote for Saad Hariri. It is a vote for Lebanon, for the stability, the economy, the sovereignty and the Arabism of Lebanon.
I know that many of you say: I love Saad and I wish Saad were a candidate in my district so I could vote for him! I know also that this feeling in politics is a normal feeling. This gives me more responsibilities and makes me proud, to remember all the time that I am here to serve you and to serve my beloved ones in all of Lebanon.
I am here to tell you that the ones who love Saad will vote for the Future lists wherever they are, in all districts. The ones who want to vote for Saad, must vote for the Future candidates, the Future lists, and transform their votes on Election Day into a talisman that protects Lebanon.
Long live Lebanon!
Before we announce the names, I would like to clarify that this is not the announcement of the lists. The lists will be announced in each district later. This is the announcement of the Future candidates and I want to pay tribute to our friends who will be with us on the lists and who are present among us today.”
Hariri then announced the names of the candidates, who came on stage. They are, for each electoral district:
Saida-Jezzine: Bahia Hariri, Hassan Chamseddine
Chouf-Aley: Mohammed Hajjar, Ghattas Khoury
West Bekaa-Rachaya: Mohammed Karaoui, Amin Wehbe, Ziad Kadri
Zahle: Assem Araji, Nizar Dalloul, others coming
Baalbeck-Hermel: Hussein Solh, Bikr Hujeiri,
Tripoli-Mennieh-Dennieh: Mohammed Kabbara, Samir Jisr, Dima Jamali, Nehme Mahfouz, Leila Chahhoud, Chadi Nashabe, Walid Sawalhi, Georges Bkassini, Kassem Abdelaziz, Sami Fatfat, Osman Alameddine
Akkar: Tarek Merehbi, Mohammed Sleiman, Walid Baarini, Hadi Hobeiche, Khodr Habib, Jean Moussa
Beirut-2: Tamam Salam, Nohad Machnouk, Ali Chaer, Rola Tabch Jaroudi, Ghazi Youssef, Rabih Hassouna, Bassem Chab, Nazih Najm, Zaher Eido, Saad Hariri.
Source: National News Agency