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Ten-day window as 3 submit resignations Speaker hopes MPs will reconsider

KUWAIT CITY, May 1: MPs Riyadh Al- Adsani, Abdulkarim Al-Kandari and Hussein Quwaian Al-Mutairi have officially submitted their resignation letter to the Parliament Office. In the resignation letter, a copy of which was made available to reporters, the MPs stated reasons for the resignation; such as breaching provisions of Article 50 of the Constitution which stipulates separation of powers between the executive and legislative authorities, inability of MPs to play their supervisory role on the government, failure to accomplish important projects, covering up corruption and corrupt persons, and the Parliament Speaker’s misuse of power. Parliament Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim confirmed receiving the resignation letter, indicating he still hopes the three MPs will change their minds although the final decision is theirs to make.

He said that according to the Parliament Charter, a resigning MP is given 10 days until his resignation letter is discussed on the closest session date, and only after discussing the matter with the Assembly will the speaker announce acceptance or rejection of the resignation. Al-Adsani had earlier expressed disappointment over the speaker for not assuming a neutral and just position during discussion of the interpellation; lamenting that every time he requested for a point of order, he was interrupted. Asked to comment on one of the reasons for the resignation - mismanagement of the speakership, Al-Ghanim said this is their personal opinion and others might disagree; pointing out the final opinion is in the hands of the Kuwaiti public.

On whether conflict between some members of the ruling family is also a reason for the resignation, Al-Ghanim declined to comment; saying, “I will only respond to questions about the resignation and issues related to the Parliament.” He stressed the current Parliament will contin-ue and the resignation of the three MPs will be handled as per the Constitution and the Parliament Charter. He said this situation is not a first in the history of Kuwait. On whether the resignation will have any negative effect on the quorum of the Parliament or not, Al-Ghanim clarified this will not affect the quorum; more so, the legislative activities because there other equally capable lawmakers.

In the meantime, speaking in a press conference during which the three MPs announced their resignation; Al-Kandari regrettably stated that he won’t be able to face his students if they ask him why he left the fate of the interpellation in the hands of the speaker. He added that sadly, Kuwait’s own government does not understand the Constitution. He admitted that they have reached a point where they are no longer able to fulfil their supervisory obligations as stipulated in the Constitution, for the government has neutralized its use.

On the other hand, Al-Adsani pointed out the Anti-Corruption Law has not been tabled for discussion to this day and this has affected the whole system, up to the extent that a prime minister is handing over money to MPs despite the Constitution’s stipulation on the absolute separation of powers. The MP then affirmed his absolute belief that the prime minister has failed and will continue to fail in leading the legislative authority, warning that all the MPs who defended him will not do him any good.

He said the deteriorating state of the government under the leadership of Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak has rendered the authority weak, and this is one of the main reasons for their resignation; in addition to the fact that they have been stripped of their interpellation right, which he described as the one and only effective tool an MP has in terms of supervision. Al-Mutairi, in turn, stated they have no intention to remain in an Assembly where the Constitution’s core is violated; hoping the best for other parliamentarians and resolution of important issues which have been pending for quite some time.

In another development, MP Auda Al- Ruwaie presented parliamentary queries to Minister of Education and Higher Education Ahmed Al-Mulaifi on the certificates accredited by the ministry. He asked about the number of accredited and non-accredited certificates from 2000 to 2014. He wants the responses to his questions to be in table form with the following details: certificates (diploma/bachelors/masters degrees); countries of scholarship; names of the university, college and institution; and major / minor fields of specialization. He also wants to know if the Higher Education Ministry sent delegations to universities in these countries: India, Philippines, Slovakia, Bahrain, Greece and Turkey. If yes, he demanded for copies of the final reports of the delegations; as well as the names, job titles and educational qualifications of the delegates. He inquired if the delegations had coordinated with the cultural attachés during their visits to the universities and reasons for stopping sending students on scholarship to India, Philippines, Slovakia and Greece. He requested for a copy of the suspension decision and asked if the ban was imposed retroactively. He went on to ask: Were the certificates obtained from academic institutions in these countries accredited after the ban was implemented? What are the justifications for the accreditation of certificates for certain students only, if any? Did the Higher Education Ministry notify the concerned students about the ban prior to their enrolment to these universities? What steps have been taken to address the problem?


By: Abubakar A. Ibrahim and Ahmed Al-Naqeeb Arab Times Staff

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