A poignant talk about the disaster

This news has been read 1278 times!

The people of Kuwait have been known, for many years, for their efforts to provide relief to the afflicted, feed the hungry, and shelter the homeless, and the names of many great philanthropists who emerged in times of distress shine throughout the history of Kuwait, whether during the year of the hull and other times, or the period of Saddam’s invasion and occupation.


Kuwait, like other rich countries, such as America, is famous, with a huge difference, for being one of the countries with the largest number of “charity” organizations and the most giving, but its giving has reached the far more than the near, because far-reaching charity work is “often far from the eyes of regulatory authorities.”

The recent tragic Mangaf fire disaster occurred, in which more than a hundred “people” were injured, half of whom died, revealing unknown circumstances, some of which must be highlighted!

Immediately after the tragic accident occurred, charities rushed to obtain a license allowing them to collect donations to relieve the families of the fire victims. Its behavior was surprising, as it basically refuses to provide any kind of assistance to those who do not belong to the same religion and sect as those who run it, since the majority of those who died or were injured are non-Muslims, and therefore their “dismay” may not be for good, but rather to obtain the tempting percentage of “those in charge of it,” which amounts to 12.5%, it is often the goal, and the Kuwaiti goodness reaching four corners of the universe is a result of that percentage, and not the primary goal?!

The deduction rate currently stands at 12.5% (i.e. one-eighth), and for more than half a century it was 20% (i.e. one-fifth), and it represents the lifeline of religious-political groups, inside and outside the country!

Hours after the Mangaf fire accident occurred, the news was reported by various Western media outlets, mostly because of the large number of victims.

However, the internal coverage of the horrific incident was not on the scale of the tragedy, and indeed shameful, as it did not take into account the loss of fifty “lives”, and similar number of injuries.

Families have their sole breadwinner, and there was no coverage in the darkest times, especially in the moments when the eyes and hearts of hundreds of thousands of families, whose members work in Kuwait, were watching on television screens, waiting, with terrible anxiety, for news about the fate of their loved ones.

The neglect was painful, and it would be different if the victims were not so poor and destitute, and our behavior harmed our reputation locally and internationally, as there was no live television coverage, no pictures of transporting the bodies, and no arrangements that showed the horror of the tragic incident, but the Royal Initiative saved the situation by announcing the Amiri Diwan’s issuance of the orders to expedite the transfer of the bodies of the ill-fated workers to their countries, in addition to disbursing immediate financial compensation to the families of the deceased and the injured.

Thanks to the various civil defense agencies and the ministries of Health and Interior, for the huge efforts they made to reduce the number of casualties and save what could be saved.

Thanks go to the Minister of the Interior for his keenness to follow legal methods in referring those who were negligent and those responsible for the incident to the investigation authorities. His action gives us confidence that we are still in a state of law, and not a farm, as some oppressed and complicated people wanted it to be. Kuwait has always been distinguished by its leadership and democracy; admired by those near and far.

The incident revealed the extent of negligence, often intentional, by all state agencies, which are responsible for monitoring the conditions of buildings, and it was clearly demonstrated that they often turned a blind eye to the lack of many of the safety requirements and procedures followed in any public housing.

How can it be accepted that the municipality, with its various departments, the fire brigade, and the Public Authority for Manpower, make periodic visits to the offices of our companies, and not do the same to hundreds of illegal buildings, crowded with thousands of workers, whose dilapidated conditions?!

These parties must be held responsible, not just the owners of the violating buildings, or those who exploited them. Therefore, the problem is with us and not with what some ignorant, sophisticated people claim that democracy is the cause of all our problems. This is nonsense after all.

e-mail: [email protected]

By Ahmed alsarraf

This news has been read 1278 times!

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