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Bill brings social sites, e-mail into Press Law

KUWAIT CITY, May 22: MP Nabil Al-Fadel has submitted a proposal to amend Press and Publications law number 3/2006 to include the social networking sites and emails. Article One of the bill states adding a clause to Article Two of the law to cover the social networking sites and emails.

Article Two stipulates inclusion of paragraph 11 to Article Two of the law as follows: Creation of news or media accounts on social networking sites is prohibited without obtaining permits from the ministries of Interior and Information.

Data about the accounts and their users must be kept in these two ministries. Accounts of local newspapers and electronic news platforms created before the implementation of the amended law are exempted from this rule.

Article Three states addition of Article 27 to the law to read as follows:

Anyone who creates news or media accounts on social networking sites without obtaining permits from the ministries of Interior and Information will be fined not less than KD3,000 and not more than KD5,000.

Article Four stipulates that provisions deemed contradictory to the amended law are null void.

Article Five mandates the Prime Minister and Cabinet to implement the law, which will take effect from the date of its publication in the Official Gazette.

In the meantime, MP Abdullah Al-Turaiji confirmed the stealing of ammunition from the Special Force is still under investigation that will continue until the truth comes out in order to punish those who neglected their duties.

The lawmaker made the statement after hearing news on the recent stealing of more than 30 guns and pistols from the weapons depot of the Special Force Unit at the Interior Ministry. It has been reported that the ministry investigated the previous weapons theft and two military officers have been accused of involvement.

According to the lawmaker, the repetition of the weapons theft whenever one of the officials in the unit travels abroad raises many questions. He wonders why the ministry still keeps this official despite his failure and negligence. He said, “I had repeatedly told Interior Sheikh Mohammed Al-Khalid on the presence of an official in the Special Forces Unit who does not deserve his position due to his inefficiency. He should be removed from his post.” He warned the repeated stealing of weapons poses a grave threat to society as it entails the presence of a well-organized group involved in the crime. He is now waiting for the ministry to take the necessary measures. Meanwhile, the Final Account and Budget Committee on Thursday discussed the budget of Kuwait Municipality.

During the meeting, Committee Chairman MP Adnan Abdulsamad revealed the Municipality has handed over land which can accommodate 160,000 housing units to the Public Authority of Housing Welfare. He said the Municipality incurred losses amounting to KD 21 million from 2008 to 2013, noting that there has been a remarkable increase in the number of contracts for sanitation works — around 46 percent with an estimated cost of KD 60 million. He added it is worth mentioning that the Municipality has been filling vacancies because Kuwaitis have rejected certain positions on grounds that they have nothing to gain from such jobs. In another development, 13 candidates — including two women — registered on Thursday; increasing the total number of candidates for the upcoming parliamentary by-election to 37.

Thursday’s two female registrants include Fatema Saqer Al-Rashoud from the Second Constituency and Mashael Al-Hajiri from the Fourth Constituency. This brings the total number of women contesting the elections to three as one of them registered on the first day.

The second, third and fourth constituencies now has one female candidate each. Other candidates who registered that day are as follows: Hussein Al-hussein and Hamad Al-Boudi from the Second Constituency; Esam Al-Khidr, Essa Al- Omairi and Fauzi Al-Ashour from the Third Constituency; and Ameen Al- Sharifi, Bader Al-Mutairi, Sultan Al- Shimiri, Fahad Al-Shimiri , Mohammed Al-Anazi and Mansour Al-Zufairi from the Fourth Constituency.

Speaking to the press after filing his candidacy, Sultan Al-Shimiri said the people of Kuwait are facing a lot of problems in the housing, health and education sectors; hence, the need for serious stance to find radical solutions quickly. He called on the legislative and executive authorities to coordinate their efforts in addressing these issues, especially since the country has the financial capability to solve the problems with the cooperation of the people.

Third Constituency candidate Esam Abdullah Al-Khedr disclosed he decided to run in the by-election to focus on corruption and many other issues; particularly those witnessed in ministries. He asked why the incumbent lawmakers continue to ignore issues which affect their constituents and they also failed to implement their electoral programs.

Fourth Constituency candidate Mansour Nashi Al-Zufairi underscored the need for the lawmakers to cooperate in serving the interests of the country and its citizens; especially since there are a number of important issues that require solutions like housing, health and education. He added the constituency is suffering due to its high population with only one hospital serving the residents.


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

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