KUWAIT CITY, Sept 22: Nine members of the Municipal Council affirmed their determination to address the challenges in the South Saad Al-Abdullah housing site, as it is the largest housing site close to the urban area, and many citizens have placed their hopes on this, reports Al-Qabas daily.
In a statement issued earlier, members Hamad Al-Medlej, Hamdi Al-Azmi, Hamoud Al-Enezi, Abdulaziz Al-Muj’el, Abdul-Wahab Boursli, Abdullah Al-Azmi, Dr. Ali bin Saber, Fahid Al-Muwaisari and Muhammad Al-Raqeeb explained that the Municipal Council issued its decision on July 14, 2014 to allocate the city site with a total area of almost 59 kilometers. Alternative sites were allocated for poultry farms, in addition to relocation of manufacturing industries and sites for cutting metals, as well as an alternative site for collecting used tires.
This decision stipulated the cancellation of all previous decisions that conflict with the housing site. A deadline for handing over the site to the Public Authority for Housing Welfare (PAHW) was approved for a maximum of five years from the issuance of the decision.
The Municipal Council agreed to PAHW’s request to expand the site by an area of 5.75 kilometers to overcome the obstacles, so that the total area becomes 64.42 kilometers. However, the site has not been handed over to PAHW.
They revealed that they are heading to the Municipal Council to address the problem, and that their future endeavors will be based on several starting points including the fact that the Municipal Council has fully played its role, took full-fledged decisions and allocated alternative areas to the concerned government agencies. It also agreed to PAHW’s request to expand the city’s site in order to deal with the existing obstacles. The authority did not benefit from the approval and did not start receiving the project.
The members stressed that the period granted was sufficient to remove the remaining obstacles, and this reveals a state of laxity in the follow-up of the bodies supervising them that is not worthy of a project included in the new Kuwait plan.
They indicated that the delay also results in a direct waste of public money that incurs the state annually an amount of KD 54 million in rent for 30,000 housing applicants, adding that the owners of those requests incurred KD 180 million, the value of what they paid in rent for their families.
They believe the government agencies concerned with removal of the damaged tires did not carry out an integrated technical study that takes into account the restrictions imposed by the Basel Convention regarding the transboundary movement of hazardous wastes and their disposal. Those authorities failed even to agree on the real number of damaged tires. Also, not allocating a budget to remove the tire obstacle represents an option that has proven unsuccessful, despite the limited budget required for this, compared to the direct expenses that the state actually incurs from disbursing the rental allowance.
The members praised Kuwait Municipality’s role in removing the municipality’s scrap obstacle and all the problematic sites by 100 percent, as well as sending warnings to remove both poultry farms and metal cutting sites as these sites were infringing on state property. This, in the eyes of the law, represents violations of state property after the end of the period specified by the municipal decision since July 14, 2019. Those existing facilities are considered a violation that requires dealing with them in accordance with the law through removal mechanisms.
The Municipal Council members called on all government agencies to cooperate with the measures that Kuwait Municipality will take in the face of the challenges of the South Saad Al-Abdullah project, as it will hold all parties responsible.