GovernanceOct 15, 2021
Expanding the Prerogatives of Caretaker Governments in Times of Crisis
Caretaker governments became much more frequent and prolonged in recent years. While the average period to form a government was six days between 1989 and 2005, it increased to 100 days between 2005 and 2016, reaching up to a full year in two recent cases: Tammam Salam’s (2014) cabinet took 315 days to be formed, while Hassan Diab presided over a caretaker government for more than a year (from August 2020 to September 2021).
- Ziyad Baroud
The prerogatives of caretaker governments are, however, subject to different interpretations, and a point of controversy among Lebanon’s politicians. Given that Lebanon’s pressing economic and financial crisis often required critical decisions from Prime Minister Hassan Diab’s caretaker government, this brief seeks to clarify the prerogatives that the constitution, legal jurisprudence, doctrine, and academics assign to caretaker governments, as well as what citizens can expect from them.Ziyad Baroud is the former Minister of Interior and Municipalities (MoIM) of the Republic of Lebanon between 2008 and 2011 in two cabinets. Under his leadership, the MoIM was awarded the 2010 United Nations Public Service Award - First Prize. A court lawyer, Managing Partner at HBDT Law Firm, and arbitrator, Ziyad Baroud is a lecturer at the Faculty of Law and Political Science of Université Saint-Joseph. In 2004, he was elected Secretary General of the Lebanese Association for Democratic Elections. He has served as a Board Member of the Lebanese Chapter of Transparency International. He also sits on the Board of Trustees of Notre-Dame University (NDU). Former Minister Baroud was the Chairperson of the Special Commission on Decentralization in 2013. In 2005, he was appointed by the Council of Ministers to the Lebanese National Commission on Electoral Reform