I can say with confidence that a majority of parliamentary interpellations in the National Assembly, especially in recent years, have become like farces characterized by a degree of ‘personalism’, most of which relate to the interests of the MPs.
Kuwait has lost significant and competent ministers as a result of these interrogations, either by cornering the ministers and forcing them to throw in the towel, of course, after the government ceases to stand by the concerned minister, or abusing his/her person and tarnishing their image, or discouraging them.
In a hush, I remember the interpellations of Adel Al-Sabeeh, Yusuf Al-Ibrahim, Ahmad Al-Rubei, Musaed Al-Haroun, Nouriya Al-Sabeeh, Abdul Mohsen Al-Madaj, Hind Al-Sabeeh and others who are known for their hard work and clean hands but were subjected to all this harm because they often insisted on applying the law or rejecting the extortion methods of the interrogating deputies.
It is unfortunate that this farce may be repeated today with the interpellation request that has been filed by MPs Hamidi Al-Subaie and Mubarak Al-Hajraf, against Minister of Commerce and Industry Khaled Al-Roudhan and their unjustified attempt to kick him out of office, perhaps because he works more than others.
Based on my business experience and bitter experience with the Ministry of Commerce, for more than half a century I presume there is tangible commendable administrative development in the Ministry of Commerce or in the Public Authority for Industry (PAI).
The Minister’s measures and reforms have led to facilitating and easing procedures for a large segment of citizens and residents and saved their time and efforts. The period required to set up companies has decreased from a few months to only hours after cancelling many of the absurd previous requirements. It is also possible to establish a company and obtain a license to practice a simple business from home.
The development includes all sectors of the ministry that deal with the public, and it has become possible to register a trademark in a record period, after it used to take more than a year. The holding joint stock companies can hold general assembly meetings easily and not be subject to the authority and mood of the ministry’s officials.
Al-Roudhan also succeeded in placing young talent in senior positions, such as Ibrahim Al-Kandari in small and medium enterprises (SMEs), and Abdul Karim Taqi at the PAI. He also succeeded in eliminating various forms of routines that exhausted both the employees and the visitors, and adopted the application of the Kuwait Business Center or the ‘one-window’ system.
Minister Al-Roudhan facilitated measures of completion of transactions related to increase the capital of companies. In a record period, the man succeeded in increasing the ministry’s supervision on irregularities to the extent a number of cases filed by the ministry against violators increased in unprecedented numbers and facilitated the process of reporting them.
Most importantly, it is the success of his team in introducing automation system, that is to say making it easy for the public to complete transactions online and in an advanced and civilized manner away from the term ‘Come tomorrow’ which also helped in computer literacy for many.
Therefore, it would be sad to lose another efficient minister, if the interrogators succeeded, and this is what we do not wish, of course.
By Ahmad Al-Sarraf