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Bill grants public debt relief on death

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KUWAIT CITY, Dec 4: MPs Saleh Ashour, Khalil Al-Saleh and Hani Shams submitted a bill on the cancellation of loans that citizens obtained from public institutions upon their death. The bill mandates the Council of Ministers to issue the executive regulations. The MPs disclosed this bill is aimed at easing the financial burdens of the heirs of borrowers. They said the loans covered by the bill include housing loans, retirees’ loans and unpaid rent for State properties among others. The explanatory memorandum of the bill states that it is easy for the country to cancel the loans of citizens upon their death; considering it gives loans and grants to other countries, and some of these loans have been cancelled.

MP Fares Al-Otaibi has submitted a proposal to add the administrative employees at Ministry of Health to the beneficiaries of Civil Service Commission (CSC) Resolution No. 13/2012 on granting hazard and infection allowances to those employed in certain institutions. He disclosed that Article Five of the resolution states that employees exposed to infection and hazards at work are entitled to the abovementioned allowances, asserting the administrative employees at the ministry are exposed to infection and hazards like the medical practitioners.

MPs Soud Al-Asfour Al-Hajri, Hamad Al-Medlej, Shuaib Shaaban, Shuaib Al-Muwaizri and Falah Dhahi Al-Hajri submitted a bill on the procedures and criteria for appointing officials in ministries, subsidiaries, military institutions, legislative and judicial authorities, other public institutions, public companies and those in which the State owns shares or contributed to the capital. The bill obliges each entity to add the detailed conditions and requirements to job advertisements, including the criteria for selecting the best applicants. Interviews should be recorded, while the names of applicants in written exams should be covered to ensure that the committee tasked to check the exam papers is impartial. All applicants will be given copies of their exam papers after checking, along with the recorded interview.

The bill aims to prevent conflict of interests by ensuring that none of the relatives of the applicants – up to the fourth degree – are members of committees in charge of the exams and interviews. It stipulates that points for interviews will constitute only 20 percent of the full score to stop the practice of giving certain applicants preferential treatment in a bid to serve personal interests.

The bill mandates the relevant institution to respond to the request of rejected applicants to know the reasons behind the rejection and reveal the results of other applicants. On the other hand, MP Hamad Al-Obaid asked all ministers about the steps taken for the encashment of the unused leave days of employees, number of employees who applied for leave encashment, number of employees who already received the cash equivalent of their unused leave days, and reasons for not paying the other employees who applied for leave encashment if any.

MP Osama Al-Shaheen forwarded queries to Minister of Commerce and Industry and State Minister for Communications and Information Technology Affairs Mazen Al-Nahed about the number of rented platforms at Shuwaikh Port, Shuaiba Port, Doha Port and others. Meanwhile, MP Hassan Jowhar called on Minister of Health Ahmed Abdulwahab Al-Adwani to solve the lack of medicines; indicating that almost 2,000 medicines are currently not available in public pharmacies.

He pointed out that a large number of these medicines are for serious illnesses like heart diseases and diabetes. He warned that the minister will be held accountable for the negative consequences, while stressing the need to quickly review the policy of the Health Ministry in procuring medicines. He said it seems the ministry starts the procedures for procuring medicines only when they are out of stock; hence, the shortage of medicines. By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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