KUWAIT CITY, Feb 17: His Highness the Amir Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah has issued an Amiri decree to suspend parliamentary sessions for a period of 30 days starting from February 18, 2021. The decree was issued based on article No. 106 of the Constitution of Kuwait.
According to Senior Constitutional Consultant of the National Assembly Dr. Abdulfattah Hassan, article No. 106 of the Kuwait Constitution gives the Amir the right to suspend parliament sessions for maximum of one month. He revealed that the article does not specify the reasons for suspending the sessions unlike article No. 107 which identifies the reasons that justify the dissolution of the parliament.
Dr. Hassan said the decree was issued due to the troubles that broke out between the executive and legislative authorities, adding that the 30-day suspension cannot be renewed without the approval of the parliament.
Meanwhile, the constitutional expert Prof. Adel Al Tabtabaei said a resigned government does not have the right to suspend parliamentary sessions or dissolve the parliament according to article No. 106.
He explained that the government is not allowed to take such an action that is prohibited to it in light of the fact that it is a resigned government due to which the parliament does not have the right to activate any parliamentary tools against it.
The constitutional expert Prof. Mohammad Al-Fili explained that a resigned government is limited to undertaking only urgent issues. The urgent issues are initially determined by the Council of Ministers, and then His Highness the Prime Minister refers the report to His Highness the Amir for approval. Nevertheless, a Prime Minister is not supposed to refer the report to His Highness the Amir before he forms the government and name the ministers.
In addition, MP Bader Al-Dahoum said the policy adopted by His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid during the inauguration session is the reason for this crisis and has led to this. Meanwhile, in yesterday’s Assembly session the Parliamentary Priorities Committee has asked the concerned committees to expedite the completion of reports about bills on granting compensation to owners of small, medium and nano enterprises; dealing with the negative consequences of coronavirus; and rescuing the small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Committee Chairman MP Hesham Al-Saleh explained this step is in response to the recent decision of the Parliament, which included eight recommendations regarding coronavirus. He hopes these reports will be included in the agenda of the next parliamentary session.
Meanwhile, MP Abdullah Al-Turaiji has proposed that domestic labor recruitment offices should be obliged to adhere to the prices specified by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry for hiring domestic workers from abroad – a total of KD 890. In his proposal, the lawmaker suggested setting aside a portion of the money for the plane ticket of the domestic worker; instead of obligating the sponsor to shoulder such cost. He called on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Public Authority for Manpower (PAM) to look for new domestic labor markets in other countries and to implement the agreement with the Philippines in this regard which has been suspended for too long.
He recommended cancellation of Basalamah platform, because it only increased the cost for citizens. He also pointed out that every Kuwaiti family allocates a private room for domestic workers, so the institutional quarantine should be replaced with home quarantine. He said the workers should be obligated to undergo PCR test in their countries and another test upon arrival in Kuwait; while both the worker and sponsor should be home quarantined for 14 days. He then suggested looking into the possibility of reducing the quarantine period to five days.
MP Muhammad Al-Hewaila submitted a bill on amending Retirees Health Insurance Law number 114/ 2014 in order to include housewives in the categories covered by the law and allow the concerned minister to add other categories Al-Hewaila pointed out the housewives render essential service to the society in the form of rearing children, and that they deserve health insurance; adding the housewives cannot afford the healthcare fees.
MP Osama Al-Shaheen submitted a proposal to require youths planning to get married to complete relevant training courses under the supervision of experts on social, psychological and economic issues. He explained these training courses are aimed at preparing youths for marital responsibilities; indicating his proposal is based on the recent report of the Justice Ministry that the projected number of divorce cases in 2022 is 8,145 and the statistics issued by Kuwaiti Family Empowerment Society stating that Kuwait has the highest divorce rate among the member-nations of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).