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Tuesday , February 18 2020

Court sets date for ruling in public funds scam

KUWAIT CITY, March 10: The Constitutional Court has set April 10 to issue its verdict on the petition filed against the constitutionality of Establishment Law of the Ministerial Court with regard to the misappropriation of public funds involving former Health Minister Dr Ali Al-Obaidi and former Undersecretary Khalid Al-Sahlawi.

Representing the two defendants, Attorney Adel Abdul-Hadi argued that the law in question only considers the ministers and does not cater for the rights of other citizens involved in the case, which they considered a breach of the constitutional principle of equality. Earlier, Attorney Abdul-Hadi filed petition before the Ministers Court arguing the constitutionality of Article 4 and 8 of the court proceedings no. 88/1955 and its amendments, which he considers a violation of Articles No. 7, 29, 34 and 167 of the constitution.

It is worth mentioning that the Ministers Court presided by Justice Bader Al-Sar’awi referred to the Constitutional Court the case concerning misappropriation of public funds that involve former Health Minister Dr Ali Al-Obaidi, former Undersecretary Khalid Al-Sahlawi, former Assistant Undersecretary for Legal Affairs Mahmoud Abdulhadi, and manager of a foreign company.

The case files indicated the Public Prosecution charged the above-mentioned individuals for squandering public funds after Al-Obaidi signed a contract with the foreign company without obtaining approval from auditing bodies.

The contract is between the ministry and an American company in charge of supervising the accounts of Kuwaiti patients undergoing treatment in the USA, and the financial damage incurred is estimated at $7 million.

Also, the consultation panel at the Constitutional Court has postponed until 10th April deliberation on a direct petition filed against law no. 13/2018 concerning confl ict of interest and its bylaws issued through decree no. 296/2018. The petition presented by Attorney Adel Abdul-Hadi argues unconstitutionality of the law in various aspects, saying its articles contradict constitutional principles.

By Jaber Al-Hamoud Al-Seyassah Staff

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