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‘Parliament came through free and fair polls, nobody can dissolve it’ ‘Take measures to stop irregularities in allocation of farm lands’

KUWAIT CITY, July 14: “The dissolution of the Parliament is in the hands of HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah while Martial Law exists only in some people’s imagination,” says Parliament Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanem.
Al-Ghanem made the statement in a press conference at the Parliament Monday when asked to comment on the opposition’s call for the dissolution of the legislature. He asserted none of them can dissolve the Parliament because it came through free and fair elections to represent the people of Kuwait. He said the voting rate in the previous year’s elections was 58 percent, while in the recently-concluded election; it was 52 percent - equivalent to 90 percent of the participation rate. 
About the meeting of the executive and legislature authorities last Sunday, Al-Ghanem described it as positive and fruitful. He confirmed the MPs were briefed on the current situation in the region and the country, hoping the government will inform the public about what it has presented to the MPs in line with the principle of transparency in dealing with local events. 
Al-Ghanem disclosed he has requested for an emergency session of the Arab Parliament on Thursday in Cairo, indicating he looks forward to ending the suffering of people in Gaza. 
 
On another issue, the speaker said it has been 20 days since the State Audit Bureau announced it is ready to receive documents to prove the alleged misappropriation of public funds but no one has done so until now, considering there are only 10 days left before the deadline. He added the bureau is ready to forward such documents to any international body to expose them to the world even before they reach the Parliament. He clarified that an informant, who goes to the bureau, has the right to choose an international body he wants to examine the documents.
Meanwhile, MP Ahmad Al-Qudaibi called on Oil Minister Ali Al-Omair to take immediate measures to stop irregularities in the allocation of farm lands to undeserving people. He pointed out the byelaws of the Public Authority for Agricultural Affairs and Fish Resources (PAAAFR) board of directors gives authority to distribute agricultural lands only to the chairman of PAAAFR. He claimed this led to the distribution of lands as gifts rather than for the purpose of increasing local agricultural production. 
 
Al-Qudaibi asserted the original objective of the distribution of agricultural lands is to meet the needs of the country but now the distribution is being done to serve political interests or through favoritism. He said this requires a serious stance by the minister to stop the irregularities in the distribution of agricultural plots.
In a related development, MP Rakan Al-Nisf submitted questions to Al-Omair on the administrative and financial violations in PAAAFR like infringements, reshuffling of leadership positions and wastage of public funds as mentioned in the report of the Audit Bureau. 
He disclosed the bureau highlighted in its report the fodder subsidy amounting to KD1,600,000. He wants to know the actions taken by the minister to investigate the anomalies and hold all those involved responsible. 
 
On the bureau’s observations about the irregularities in the distribution of lands for breeding Arabian horses, he inquired about the measures taken by the ministry to protect such State properties. He wants to know if the ministry formed committees to look into these issues. If yes, he requested for details like names of the members of committees, results of investigations and those tasked to prepare the final report. He asked if agricultural lands have been distributed to officials of the authority or their relatives up to the fourth degree and actions taken in this regard.  On the bureau’s comment on the appointment procedures in the authority, he requested for information on the conditions for the appointment of the director general and the restructuring procedures.
   
 
 By Abubakar A. Ibrahim
Arab Times Staff
 
 
 

By: Abubakar A. Ibrahim

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