KUWAIT is in a predicament due to a floundering government that does not know how to treat the wounds that it has caused to the country, and a Parliament that does not solve even a single problem and refuses to provide a solution. In between those two is the citizen who is faced with a big burden due to issues related to his financial and living conditions, while those responsible for safeguarding such matters seem unconcerned.
Therefore, the only thing left for the people to do is to urge His Highness the Amir to rescue this country from the tunnel of a crisis that seems to prolong as long as the executive authority does everything as though it doesn’t want to do anything, while the legislative authority refuses to pass the public debt law and withdraw from the future generations fund.
In fact, the legislative authority has not prepared any proposals to rescue the country, but rather escalate the crises as if they are pushing people into an abyss.
A simple challenge related to combating the COVID-19 pandemic sparked a great confusion. This can only happen to those who do not understand the alphabet of administration. Those responsible for the health affairs ignored all measures that could help in containing the spread of the virus, and instead devoted themselves to resolving the issue faced by hotel owners. They did this through their decision to mandate Kuwaitis to be quarantined institutionally in a hotel instead of their homes. Such a measure contradicts the Constitution, but if only they knew.
On the other hand, the government has opted to be stubborn regarding the financial issue. It has resorted to sending a bill for withdrawing from the future generations fund to the National Assembly, which is suspended temporarily in accordance with article No. 106 of the Constitution.
What kind of a mess is this? Can someone, who is not able to resolve a simple matter such as imposing precautionary measures to confront COVID-19 pandemic, be able to solve a sensitive issue such as the financial situation, to which the government has negatively contributed since the beginning of the pandemic?
It failed to act in the manner that many countries adopted to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 crisis. It justified itself by claiming that the parliament rejected the public debt law. It also established a stimulus fund which had nothing stimulus in it. Furthermore, it yielded to the things being published in the social media. This begs us to wonder – Is this how a country is managed?
For a year now, everyone has been talking about the need to transform the crisis into an opportunity, even if the matter calls for issuing a series of laws by decrees of necessity, and investing in the purchase of companies’ shares, real estate portfolios and other international markets.
We are not suggesting to invest in the Kuwaiti market because there are those who will come out to say that we want to sell our shares in the Kuwaiti financial market. This is the kind of helpless talk that can be expected from people who do not want the country to get out of this financial impasse.
If we contemplate its negative consequences, we will find that its repercussions are greater than those of the Iraqi invasion.
Meanwhile, the major international rating agencies are still warning, in their reports, of the government’s mistake in handling the financial situation, and are recommending a change in approach. However, the government seems deaf, and the Central Bank seems to have let go and chosen silence, because either it is unable to reach a solution, or it has been infected by the confusion of the executive authority.
In addition, the press did not leave a single occasion without sounding the alarm, as did the country’s top bankers and experts who have no interest but to maintain Kuwait’s financial and economic strength. However, it seems His Highness the Prime Minister does not want to listen to the words of truth.
In theory, it is true that the government has the right to borrow from the future generations fund because it has been saving for the rainy days. Nevertheless, before resorting to this painful surgical procedure, it has several alternatives that are still available.
However, it seems the government is unable to resolve the situation because of its loss of vision. And the MPs are only concerned with their individual and partisan interests. This, undoubtedly, is not just the highest degree of weakness and indifference, but also a lack of national responsibility.
Amid this chaos, the people of this country can do nothing except urge the top leadership – the guardian of the Constitution and the head of all authorities – to take decisive steps, because the government’s inactivity in this regard indicates great danger.
In front of this bleak picture that the legislative and executive authorities have brought us to, the people of this country turns to you, Your Highness, to get them out of confusion with firm royal orders to preserve the good of the country and to stop the snowball of crisis that grows every day.
People do not want anything other than their homeland to be prosperous, to enjoy a decent life, and not to get lost in a bottomless institutional maze.
We are tired of calling both the government and the National Assembly to come to a common ground, favor the language of reason over stubbornness, and stop the game of procrastination.
Kuwait is bigger than a prime minister, a minister or an MP… its fate is not a rash game of drifting.
Your Highness, rescue the country with a series of necessary decrees. For those who are walking in their harmful path will go to no end. Recklessness has not found someone to cure it. We are a nation that talks too much but does little work … Now all that is needed is a series of royal decrees.
By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times