KUWAIT CITY, Feb 9: National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim on Tuesday traveled to Doha, Qatar for an official twoday visit in response to the invitation of Qatar’s Shura Council Chairman Ahmed bin Abdullah Al-Mahmoud.
During the visit, Al-Ghanim will meet His Highness the Amir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani to verbally convey the message of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. He will also meet with his Qatari counterpart. Among those who bid farewell to Al-Ghanim upon departure were acting Speaker MP Farz Al-Daihani, interim Minister of State for National Assembly Affairs Mubarak Al-Harees, Ambassador of Qatar to Kuwait Bandar Muhammad Al-Atiya and acting Secretary-General of the Assembly Adel Al-Lughani.
Earlier on the same day, Al-Ghanim met Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlut Cavusoglu and his accompanying delegation; during which the two parties exchanged pleasantries and discussed issues of mutual concern. Meanwhile, the parliamentary Environment Affairs Committee met Chairman of the Environment Public Authority (EPA) Sheikh Abdullah Al-Homoud Al-Sabah, representatives of the Public Authority for Housing Welfare (PAHW), and members of the parliamentary Housing Affairs Committee on Tuesday.
Chairman of the Environment Affairs Committee MP Hamad Al-Matar affirmed the meeting was fruitful; pointing out they discussed the environmental obstacles in South Saad Al-Abdullah Residential Area, particularly Rahiya, where the used tyres have piled up. He confirmed that Sheikh Abdullah promised to relocate the used tyres in Salmi within six months.
On the other hand, MP Abdullah Al-Turaiji forwarded queries to interim Minister of Commerce and Industry and State Minister for Economic Affairs Faisal Al-Medlej about the ‘suspicious’ contract through which the ministry assigned the National Technology Enterprises Company to carry out the census for 2021. He wants to know the reasons behind the decision to entrust the project, which costs KD7 million, to the company instead of floating a public tender; why the ministry contravened the decision of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) to conduct the census in December 2020; and history of the company in terms of executing similar projects; names, qualifications and salaries of the chairman and members of the Board of Directors of the company. He requested for copies of approvals from the relevant monitoring institutions.
He asked if such approvals were obtained due to the need to compare the cost of using the information recorded by public institutions and conducting field census, and number of Kuwaiti employees in the company compared to expatriates. He added that although Al-Medlej is serving in interim capacity, it does not mean he is away from questioning; while stressing he is keen on stopping such a suspicious contract. MP Mehalhal Al-Mudaf asked interim Minister of Interior Sheikh Thamer Ali Al-Sabah about the number of ongoing projects in the Amiri Diwan; number of executed projects from Jan 1, 2011 till date; cost of each project; and legal basis for the Amiri Diwan to implement development projects.
He also submitted queries to interim Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Anas Al-Saleh on the number of aircraft in the Amiri fleet, list of individuals using the fleet, legal basis for them to use such aircraft, sources of money used for the operation and parking of the Amiri fleet, and number of Kuwaiti and expatriate employees in the fleet.
He asked interim Minister of Justice Nawaf Al-Yasseen about the number of employees in the Amiri Diwan who resigned recently because of the decree to terminate those with the rank of minister, if they submitted their financial disclosures to Kuwait Anti-Corruption Authority (Nazaha), if any of them were exempted from submitting the financial disclosures, and if any of them were referred to the Public Prosecution for failure to submit their financial disclosures.
MP Badr Al-Humaidi also submitted questions to interim Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Anas Al-Saleh regarding the information spread on social media that the Amiri Diwan transferred KD4 million on Aug 18, 2011 to the head of the Kuwaiti permanent delegation to an international organization. He asked why the Ministry of Foreign Affairs did not transfer the money. He forwarded queries to interim State Minister for Housing and Services Affairs Dr Abdullah Ma’arefiabout the number of flights arriving from Turkey and Dubai since Feb 3, 2021; nationalities of the expatriate passengers; and the jobs and names of the sponsors of these expatriates.
MP Osama Al-Shaheen presented questions to interim Minister of Finance Khalifa Hamada about the bankruptcy of KNOTEL Company. He asked why the ministry decided to invest money in the company in 2019 despite the fact that it was established in 2016 which means it is a start-up company, amount of the total investment of the government in the company, total gains and total potential losses.
By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff