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Penalty bill to Assembly

HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah chairing Sunday’s emergency Cabinet meeting

KUWAIT CITY, March 18: HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah has presented a bill to the National Assembly amending Law No. 12/1969, which organizes procedures to protect the public from infectious diseases.

Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid requested for fast-track discussion of the bill as per articles 98 and 181 of the National Assembly Decree. According to the bill, the text of Article 17 of the abovementioned law is replaced with the following:

  1. Whoever violates the provisions of this law or its executive decrees will be imprisoned for a maximum period of three months and fined KD 5,000 maximum or any of these two penalties;
  2. Whoever violates Article 15 of this law will be imprisoned for six months maximum and fined KD 30,000 maximum or any of these two penalties;
  3. Whoever is aware that he is suffering from an infectious disease and infects others deliberately with bad intent will be imprisoned for five years maximum and fined KD 10,000 to KD 50,000 or any of these two penalties.

Meanwhile, the meeting on coronavirus continued Wednesday in the office of Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim. Present at the meeting were Minister of Social Affairs and State Minister for Economic Affairs Mariam Al-Aqeel, Secretary of the Assembly Dr Oudah Al-Ruwai’e, Secretary General of the Assembly Allam Al-Kandari and 13 MPs.

Minister issues decree
Health Minister Dr Basel Al- Sabah issued a number of decrees Wednesday to ban different types of social gatherings including weddings, feasts and so on within the mainframe of coronavirus preventative measures.

The decrees, which KUNA obtained a copy of, prevents large non-family gatherings, receptions. Public and private diwaniyas (gathering halls) are also included in the new measures.

The police will be tasked to enforce the decrees in accordance with laws connected with the prevention of disease. All measures will be implemented as part of the nationwide efforts to prevent the further spread of coronavirus.

The Interior Ministry suspended Wednesday the employment of hourly-paid domestic workers as part of the nationwide measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Interior Ministry’s assistant secretary for residency affairs Major General Talal Marafisaid this sector of the working force has a chance of contracting the virus or help spread it due to the nature of their work. Marafiasked the people to inform the competent authorities of any developments concerning this matter.

Correlation unknown
It is yet unknown whether the rising temperature in the State of Kuwait during summer will have an effect on the spread of coronavirus, said a Health Ministry official Wednesday.

In a press conference, Health Ministry Spokesman Dr Abdullah Al-Sanad indicated that there is no reliable study so far that correlates the decrease of coronavirus spread to increasing temperatures. There are regions in the world that had increasing temperatures yet the virus still continues to spread, noted the spokesman.

Whether patients contracting the coronavirus will have immunity, Dr Al-Sanad revealed that in China, 14 percent of tests done on recovering patients had shown that symptoms did not return after hospital discharge; however, such data is still inconclusive.

In Kuwait, the Health Ministry continues to be vigilant and some 105 clinics as well as other health facilities work throughout the day and night to fend off the spread of the virus, he said.

In regard to those who recovered in Kuwait, currently at 15, Dr Al- Sanad revealed that the age of the recoverees varied, adding that what is needed now was to increase campaign of awareness in the country to vanquish the disease.

Dealers penalized
Ministry of Commerce and Industry said on Wednesday three commercial stores and a number of vegetable vendors’ stands were closed for violating regulations against the novel coronavirus.

The ministry said in a statement that teams inspected 238 pharmacies, issued 72 penalty notifications to commercial stores for breaching laws and allowed re-opening nine others after receiving pledges to tackle the violations. The inspection teams have also examined 23 branches of supply centers for the Flour Mills Company and bakeries to ensure easy sales and work.

It warned traders against bids to take advantage of the current extraordinary circumstances in the country. Kuwait Airways is ready to receive orders to evacuate more citizens from abroad, said Board Chairman Youssef Al-Jassem on Wednesday. In a press release, Al-Jassem stressed that the Kuwait Airways’ fleets, staff, and crew members will answer the call of duty whenever needed. He affirmed that Kuwait Airways will use all of its assets to serve the Kuwaiti people in these trying times.

By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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