Monday , September 24 2018

Panel rejects bill to impose fees on expats remittances – MP files grilling against minister

KUWAIT CITY, Nov 15: The parliamentary Legislative and Legal Affairs Committee on Sunday rejected a bill submitted by MP Kamel Al-Awadhi to amend the Central Bank of Kuwait Law in order to impose five percent fee on the remittances of expatriates. Speaking to reporters after the committee meeting, Rapporteur MP Ahmad Al-Qudaidi confirmed they also discussed the Public Authority for Industry Bill and forwarded it to the relevant committee.

He added the committee approved the request of the Public Prosecution to lift the immunity of MP Nabil Al-Fadel on press misdemeanor cases, but rejected the same request for MP Abdullah Al Maayouf. The committee postponed discussions on the request to lift the immunity of MP Saleh Ashour as he intends to attend the next meeting.

Al-Qudaibi went on to say the pre-trial proceedings in the Criminal Code will be the same in terms of the periods, indicating there is no change in the periods for misdemeanor cases. On the other hand, MP Saadoun Hamad Al-Otaibi submitted Sunday his grilling request against Minister of Public Works, Electricity and Water Ahmad Al- Jassar to National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim. The three-point interpellation motion is based on Article 100 of the Constitution, stating that, “Every member of the National Assembly may address interpellation motions to the prime minister and ministers on matters under their jurisdiction.”

The lawmaker intends to grill the minister on the supposed financial and administrative irregularities and suspicion of encroachment on public funds in relation to the awarding of a tender for the establishment and furnishing of a new terminal at Kuwait International Airport.

It can be recalled that Al-Jassar submitted his resignation to the Cabinet late in September, and it has not been accepted nor rejected.

On Sept 29, then acting Prime Minister and Interior Minister Sheikh Mohammad Al-Khaled Al- Hamad Al-Sabah notified the Cabinet on Al-Jassar’s resignation letter which was addressed to HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al- Sabah.

This was followed by a decision on assigning State Minister for Cabinet Affairs Sheikh Mohammad Al-Abdullah Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah to handle the Ministry of Electricity and Water, while State Minister for Housing Affairs Yasser Abul was assigned to the Ministry of Public Works. Meanwhile, the Financial and Economic Committee set its priorities for the current legislative round, which include the Tenders and Commercial Agencies Bill, in addition to the amendment of the Planning Law and Facilities and Services Fees Act.

Committee Chairman MP Faisal Al- Shaya explained the amendments to the Social and Economic Planning Law include the removal and revision of certain words or terms. He added the Legislative Committee considers it unconstitutional to amend the Facilities and Services Fees Act as the government increases fees without the law, so the Finance Committee will study the proposed amendment in its next meeting.

Moreover, Minister of Information and State Minister for Youth Affairs Sheikh Salman Al-Hamoud Al-Sabah disclosed his ministry has presented its viewpoint on the Electronic Media Law to the parliamentary Education, Culture and Guidance Affairs Committee. He confirmed the ministry explained all the goals of this regulatory project, which aims to address loopholes in the existing regulations for national media with the support of the Press and Publications Law.

On sports issue, the minister claimed that those who sought to suspend local sports are now pushing for Kuwait’s participation in international events. He asserted that as a sovereign State, Kuwait rejects participation under the Olympic flag. He stressed Kuwait will not participate unless the Kuwaiti flag is flying. He revealed the Sports Authority has submitted another letter to the Olympic Committee of Kuwait indicating its commitment to international laws

By Abubakar A. Ibrahim Arab Times Staff

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