Wednesday , August 22 2018

Govt to review petition on expat health charges

31 officials in KD 5.5m scam probe

KUWAIT CITY, Feb 1: The Court of Appeals Wednesday adjourned to March 4 the petition presented by the counsel to a group of expatriates who called for the cancellation of increase in health charges for expatriates.

The petition was adjourned for review by the government. The plaintiff counsel explained in the petition that the decision to increase health charges for expatriates in public hospitals contradicts the Constitution and law. The contested decision was to replace an effective law No. 1/1999 but a law cannot be amended or cancelled by a ministerial decision but only by a similar law.

In its memo to the court, the Fatwa and Legislation Department stressed the absence of interest for the plaintiff, who is a citizen due to which the decision does not concern him. It said the decision is intended exclusively for expatriates and it is applied everywhere around the world, stressing the lack of abuse of power. The department affirmed that the decision does not contradict the health insurance law for expatriates.

31 under probe: The Misdemeanor Court has scheduled March 14 for the hearing on a lawsuit involving 31 government officials accused of facilitating unlawful collection of KD 5.5 million from the public fund while awarding the Jaber Stadium. The officials were from the Ministry of Public Works and Public Authority for Youth and Sports, as well as the contractor who handled the project. The court decided to invite the Director General of Public Authority for Youth and Sports Dr Hamoud Fleitah and Dr Hassan Kamal from Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research as prosecution witnesses. All accused persons pleaded not guilty to the allegations, while their counsel requested more time to study the case for proper defense. It will be recalled the accused persons were initially 37 before six of them were exonerated. The Public Prosecution Department charged them for facilitating unlawful collection of the sum, which had been kept in the custody of the Ministry of Public Works to execute the contract. The officials should not have released the fund knowing well that there were some observations in the project, and so the action was regarded as a case of forgery.

By Jaber Al-Hamoud Al-Seyassah Staff

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