KUWAIT CITY, Feb 23: The problem of expatriates stranded in transit countries on their way to Kuwait is worsening as their expenses increase day after day, reports Al-Rai daily. The recent decision to continue the entry ban on non-Kuwaitis broke the resolve of these expatriates who have been trying hard to gather their resources in order to bear the cost of institutional quarantine upon their arrival in Kuwait.
However, they are now caught between two fires as they cannot return to Kuwait and their home countries. Reliable sources disclosed the number of people stranded in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on their way to Kuwait is estimated at more than 3,000 – some of whom extended their stay for about two months due to the successive decisions issued by the authorities in Kuwait regarding the entry of expatriates through the airport. Sources pointed out the entry visas of many of those in transit in Dubai have expired, but the authorities in there extended the visas until March 31 for free on humanitarian grounds.
However, those who entered Sharjah had to pay the fee for renewing their visas, pending the opening of the airport in Kuwait. The recent decision of the authorities in Kuwait prompted many of the stranded expatriates to change their mind as they started procedures to return to their home countries after their long wait in transit countries without any glimmer of hope that they could enter Kuwait soon.
Sources added some of these expatriates were happy about the circular on institutional quarantine as they could return to Kuwait, so they booked hotels for this purpose using their savings only to be slapped with another shocking decision – continuation of entry ban for expatriates.
This put them in a deeper crisis as they cannot immediately refund the fees for booking hotels; while the decision to remain in transit countries or return home entails more expenses. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Electricity and Water sent the list employees eligible for frontline workers incentive to the Civil Service Commission (CSC) after obtaining approval from the concerned officials, reports Al-Anba daily quoting reliable sources.
Sources confirmed the ministry pushed through with its decision to put these employees under the second category of the beneficiaries of the incentive, as many of them were exposed to coronavirus while carrying out their work tasks within the period specified by the Council of Ministers. Regarding the amendment of the number of employees entitled to the incentive, sources clarified there has been no reduction because all employees included in the list deserve the incentive.