Legislation long overdue

WE HOPE the newly-elected Parliament will begin its tenure by issuing legislation to give a boost to Kuwait’s infrastructure — which until now was rejected by members the former parliaments who concentrated more on trivial and provocative issues. Instead of issuing legislation or carrying out their supervisory work, these parliaments disrupted development and put a dent in the prosperity of the nation — to the extent we got fed up of counting their follies.

Foremost, I salute the Minister of Com merce and Industry Anas Al-Saleh for exerting diligent efforts to introduce the commercial companies draft law. Although this law was overdue when it was introduced it failed to get the approval because it was not among the priorities of our parliaments — as I mentioned above.

I was part of the committees which were in charge of preparing this draft law 15 years ago. Can you image a draft law being shelved for nearly two decades and they tell us decrees of necessity are issued in emergency cases? Is there an emergency bigger than this? The second law which is overdue is the ‘assets declaration law’ for senior officials including ministers, undersecretaries, assistant undersecretaries and lawmakers. This law is particularly important because a lawmaker who was penniless when he became an MP overnight becomes owner of commercial complexes, chalets and factories in addition to owning luxury cars, villas and resorts. This was clear from the decision to shelve the report on the so-called multimillion deposits which held the parliaments responsible for this negligence and lack of legislation.

The complementary suggestion in this draft law is the formation of the Ethics Committee which is unheard of in Kuwaiti parliaments in spite of the fact that such committees are present in all world parliaments. This committee will deter despotism of some lawmakers who use their parliamentary immunity to violate public morals and the rights of citizens. It is a golden opportunity to give a nod to the formation of such a committee in the absence of ‘naughty’ lawmakers of the former Parliament who opposed the formation of this committee because they were certain to be the first victims. This is a request for my colleagues who are MPs in the current Parliament — MPs Ali Al-Rashid, Yaqoub Al-Sane, Nawaf Al-Fuzai and Thikra Al-Rashidi who are honest and sincere and can give a seal of approval to such a committee.

The second suggestion which I hope to put forward is to look into the issue of multimillion deposits but to do this it is necessary to audit the bank balances from 2006 onwards of those who portray themselves as heroes in our public squares and hail people who offer them such money as statesmen, but turn their backs on them once they oppose their malpractices. As a nation, the citizens want to know who have received huge sums of money through illegal means so that they can banish such MPs and isolate them from our lives. We ask the new lawmakers not to isolate the ‘tomb’ of the build-operate-transfer (BOT) law which was issued by one of the recent parliaments by which all BOT projects in the country were suspended. The list of overdue laws is big and the nation will collaborate with the lawmakers in this regard.

e-mail: albaghli@hotmail.com

By: Ali Ahmed Al-Baghli

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