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Sunday , September 19 2021

Budget concerns over yes-no special session

KUWAIT CITY, June 20: National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim invited the MPs and government to the special session slated for Tuesday and Wednesday as per the proposal of several MPs, including Deputy Speaker Ahmed Al-Shuhoumi, to discuss and approve reports on the general budget for fiscal 2021/2022. Items in the agenda include the budgets of ministries and public institutions as per decree number 12/2021, budgets of independent institutions as per decree number 13/ 2021, and budgets of subsidiaries as per decree number 14/ 2021.

Al-Ghanim pointed out that he called for the special session, because it is known that some MPs are trying to disrupt the ordinary session. He stressed the importance of discussing and ratifying the budgets as they affect the day-to-day life of citizens; including appointments, allowances for retirees, distribution of housing plots and establishment of housing enterprises. He added Article 145 of the Constitution states that in case the general budget is not approved, the budget of the preceding fiscal year is enforced. He was quick to add though that this article refers to a temporary and precautionary procedure, citing Article 140 which mandates the government to present the budget and refer the relevant bill to the Assembly two months before the end of fiscal year on April 30.

He said the government submitted the bill to the parliamentary Budgets and Final Accounts Committee on Jan 28, 2021 and the latter was supposed to submit the report to the Assembly within six months; but it did not do so and it even asked the Assembly for more time to complete its report. Meanwhile, Al-Shuhoumi disclosed that he and 14 MPs submitted the proposal to hold the special session due to the position adopted by the opposition MPs who insist on disrupting ordinary sessions and this has negatively affected the citizens. He added that deliberations on development enterprises and other important issues like overseas treatment will be suspended unless the budget is approved. He called on the MPs to let go of their stubbornness and fulfill their duty to serve in the interest of citizens. By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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