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MPs discuss proposals on granting citizenship


KUWAIT CITY, May 18: The parliamentary Interior and Defense Affairs Committee discussed Wednesday the proposal to amend the law on the number of people who will be granted Kuwaiti citizenship this year. Earlier on May 11, the National Assembly approved the proposal to grant citizenship to 4,000 applicants this year.

Committee Rapporteur MP Majid Mussa said Assistant Undersecretary for Citizenship and Passports Affairs at the Interior Ministry Sheikh Mazen Al-Jarrah attended the meeting. He added the committee rejected the suggestion to limit the naturalization of Bedouns. On the other hand, the Human Resources Development Committee approved the proposed amendments to Law Number 15/1979 on the appointment of State officials despite the government’s reservations on several articles.

Committee Chairman MP Dr Khalil Abdullah said State Minister for Cabinet Affairs Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah. He affirmed the committee voted unanimously on the proposed amendments as they include clear criteria for the selection and evaluation of State officials. He explained the proposal includes stipulation on the tenure of State officials — three years which can be renewed for a similar period only after evaluation of the performance, not automatic. He went on to say that if the proposal is approved, officials who have been in service for 12 years or more will be referred for retirement within a year after the publication of the law in the official gazette.

Meanwhile, the Public Utilities Committee finalized its discussion on the amendment of Municipal Law Number 5/2005. Committee Rapporteur MP Saud Al-Hariji said the committee rejected the government’s proposal to disconnect electricity and water from violating structures prior to the issuance of a court verdict because the judicial proceedings may continue for a year or more.

Other suggestions approved by the committee are as follows: amend fines to minimum of KD 50 instead of KD 100 and maximum of KD 500 rather than KD 1,000; duration of the work of the Municipal Council will be 100 days instead of 90 days without specifying the committees; formation of the Petitions and Complaints Committee; the director general of the Kuwait Municipality will preside over the executive branch, not the heads of the executive branch and the municipal system; and the municipal election areas shall be the same — according to geographical distribution.

Al-Hariji added the committee rejected the proposal to again put supermarkets and general stores under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Commerce. The panel also disapproved the recommendation of MP Adel Al-Kharafi to divide Kuwait into municipalities such that each governorate will have a municipal council and to establish a higher council for municipalities, because this is not the right time to take such steps.

By Abubakar A. Ibrahim – Arab Times Staff

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