KUWAIT CITY, Feb 20: The decision issued by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Thursday to mandate institutional quarantine for passengers arriving to Kuwait has sparked protests in both Kuwaiti and non- Kuwaiti circles, as well as the Parliament.
They consider it to be inconsistent with Article No. 28 of the Constitution, which stipulates, “A Kuwaiti citizen may not be deported from Kuwait or prevented from returning to it.”
Some hinted at the influence of hotels and resorts in this decision. Informed sources suggested that the Cabinet may amend or correct the decision of DGCA, given its violation of the Constitution, indicating that the intention is to abolish the requirement of institutional quarantine for Kuwaitis returning from abroad and instead allow them to be home quarantined for 14 days.
The sources expressed regret at what they described as “the government’s return to improvised and flawed decisions”, stressing that the decision related to institutional quarantine for citizens was unsuccessful and opened the door to widespread criticism of the government, as it was not subject to adequate legal and constitutional study.
In the same context, Minister Sheikh Thamer Al-Ali stressed the importance for travelers to adhere to the instructions and guidelines issued by DGCA, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Interior, and follow the safety procedures.
According to a statement issued by the Department of Public Relations and Security Media in the Ministry of Interior, the minister declared that all arriving and departing passengers who wish to return to the country must have seven-day hotel reservation booked at their own expense and them must complete another seven days of home quarantine, in addition to bearing the costs of PCR tests.
He affirmed that these procedures will apply for travel by air, land and sea. Sheikh Tamer called on citizens and residents to abide by the directives of the responsible authorities, stressing that, “Arrivals and departures will not be allowed to travel without registering in the “Kuwait Traveler” (Mosafer) app, and completing the hotel reservation procedures.” MP Abdullah Al-Turaiji stressed that Kuwait is a state of institutions, and has Constitution and laws, insisting that no citizen must be prevented from entering under the pretext of not having a hotel reservation. MP Fayez Al-Jumhur said, “It is not permissible to deport a Kuwaiti from his own country or prevent him from returning to it. Citizens should not be required to bear financial burdens that they cannot bear.”
By Salem Al-Wawan, Khaled Al- Hajri, Raed Yousef, Abdul Rahman Al-Shammari and Munaif Nayef Al-Seyassah Staff