Concerns Arise as MP Issues Warning on VAT Plan

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KUWAIT CITY, Sept 6: “If it is true that the government has started discussing bills on the value added tax (VAT), selective tax and public loan; this will mark the end of parliamentary coordination with the executive authority,” says MP Abdulkareem Al-Kandari. Al-Kandari made the statement in view of the recent headline of Al-Jarida daily about the abovementioned move by the government, stressing the people were stunned upon reading this news. He pointed out that if this is fake news, it only means the government is incapable of defending itself since it did not deny such erroneous information. He wondered about the absence of the official spokesperson of the government in the midst of this controversy, while the ministers have refrained from clarifying the issue. He said the people are waiting for vital bills like salary and pension increments, only to find out the government is working against their demands.

Abdulaziz Al-Kandari

He added if the news is true, the abovementioned bills will never be ratified; as the parliamentary majority represents the people of Kuwait. On the recent decision of the Iraqi Federal Court to nullify the treaty between Kuwait and Iraq to organize sailing at Abdullah Bay, he asked Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Salem Al- Sabah to explain the issue to the people. He pointed out that although Kuwait is protected by the United Nations resolutions, the government must take action regarding the Iraqi decision as it unveils the bad intentions of Iraq, which previously invaded Kuwait. “In 2014, the Iraqi Court declared that the treaty is constitutional, only to nullify it in 2023. Nothing has changed except the Iraqi attitude and intentions. Sheikh Salem Al-Sabah should issue an official statement to reveal the facts. The people are concerned and they must be informed,” he asserted.

Talking about the news on the plan of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to privatize cooperative societies, Al-Kandari said Minister of Commerce and Industry and State Minister for Youth Affairs Muhammad Othman Al-Aiban did not deny the news; while Chairman of the Cooperative Societies Union Abdulwahab Al-Fares disclosed that he called the minister who denied it. He added the ministry intends to take this step in response to the query of a lawmaker.

Meanwhile, MP Hamdan Al-Azmi forwarded queries to Deputy Prime Minister, State Minister for National Assembly and Cabinet Affairs Essa Al-Kandari about the violations that the Civil Services Commission (CSC) committed regarding the recruitment of public sector employees. He asked if there are applicants nominated for jobs even if they did not meet the requirements. If yes, he wants to know their number and the institutions that hired them, total number of applicants registered at the CSC including their qualifications and if there is a plan to hire those who submitted their applications three years ago. MP Majed Al-Mutairi has forwarded queries to Minister of Public Works Amani Bugamaz about the violations of National Aviation Services (NAS) since it signed the contract with the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) more than 20 years ago.

He asked about the remarks that the State Audit Bureau (SAB) recorded against NAS, measures taken regarding the company’s violations, if it is true that the DGCA will extend the contract of NAS for two years despite the violations like occupying State properties without paying the charges and delayed payment of debts amounting to KD1 million to DGCA as stated during the parliamentary session allocated for discussing the State budget and final accounts in 2020, if a factfinding committee was formed to investigate the violations recorded from 2017 to 2019, and conclusion and recommendations of the committee. MP Fayez Al-Jomhour asked State Minister for Municipal and Communication Affairs Fahd Al-Shuala if Kuwait Municipality signed a contract with a cleaning company to collect waste from Jleeb Al-Shuyoulh. If yes, why does the area remain unhygienic, not to mention the accumulated waste? By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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