KUWAIT CITY, Sept 18: MPs Hamoud Al-Khudair and Askar Al-Anazi were shocked when they heard news on the dismissal of more than 100 Kuwaiti employees from Shuaiba Refinery and that they were replaced with Asian workers.
Stressing that generating job opportunities for Kuwaitis will remain as one of the priorities of lawmakers, Al-Khudair and Al- Anazi pointed out that if the news is true then it means the oil minister is disregarding all decisions on replacement of national manpower and shattering the dreams of Kuwaiti youths.
They affirmed the lawmakers will not ignore such provocative acts in the oil sector. They accused Minister of Oil, Electricity and Water Essam Al-Marzouq of provoking the National Assembly through acts which entail unwillingness to cooperate with MPs; thereby, putting himself in an unpleasant situation.
They warned that continuation of this provocative approach will only increase the political price the minister has to pay. They also reiterated their call on the minister to generate jobs for Kuwaitis in the oil sector instead of employing expatriates.
Meanwhile, Official Spokesperson of Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) Bassem Al-Issa on Monday denied the alleged sacking of Kuwaiti employees after the closure of Shuaiba Refinery recently. He asserted the company did not terminate any employee or canceled any contract, affirming the status of Kuwaiti workers in the refinery is the top priority of the company. He also clarified that Kuwaiti employees, who were supposedly dismissed, were transferred to other Internafacilities with the same employment conditions.
In another development, MP Majed Al-Mutairi urged the minister to personally follow up reports on the recent discovery of oil spots near Al-Zour plants in the northern and southern areas. He emphasized the need for the minister to take preventive measures, considering the repetition of oil leakage incidents which might damage vital facilities. He pointed out that steps have been taken to contain the oil spill through the contingency plans laid down earlier, indicating the minister must oversee the implementation of these plans and then update the National Assembly in this regard.
Meanwhile, MP Mohammed Al-Dalal criticized the decision of Minister of Social Affairs and Labor and State Minister for Economic Affairs Hind Al-Sabeeh to dissolve the Board of Directors of Kaifan Cooperative Society. He claimed the decision was based on “the report of an internal investigation committee in the ministry and there are fears that the elected board might privatize the cooperative.” He warned the decision could harm the cooperative and its shareholders in particular, and the entire cooperative sector in general.
This has prompted the lawmaker to forward questions to the minister as he wants to know the results of the investigation conducted by the commission of inquiry which were used as basis for the dissolution of the board. He demanded for copies of the final report of the commission of inquiry and the memorandum submitted by the vice-chairman of the Higher Committee to look into the results of investigation and evaluate the work of the commission. He asked if members of the dissolved board of directors filed a complaint at the Public Prosecution, measures taken in this regard, if the board members were found to have violated regulations, and if there is a plan to privatize the cooperative.
By Abubakar A. Ibrahim Arab Times Staff