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Health corruption!

Ali Ahmed Al-Baghli

INDEED brothers, corruption, which is literally considered unhealthy, has recently been highlighted by credible testimonies in the country, with many claiming to be religious and righteous, let alone a variety of transparency and anti-corruption agencies that block the sun, starting from the State Audit Bureau, to financial control agency, and transparency agency (NAZAHA).

These agencies were established one after the other as decorative instrumental bodies, but the meter continues to capture the spread of corruption in every aspect. Hopes have been placed on the institutions of our government and its personnel to curb the widespread corruption, even at a small rate.

The recent “alarm” that we hope will not fall on deaf ears came from honorable Dr Fatma Hamada, the supervisor of medical committees in the Public Medical Board, concerning corruption in Ministry of Health.

May Almighty Allah bring up more of her kind, and may He protect her from the vengeance of the corrupt and wicked ones from wherever they come.

Without mincing her words, Dr Hamada said, “Majority of the decisions of the higher board of overseas medical treatment are influenced by the parliamentary force.”

This new terminology of “parliamentary force” in the democratic world was coined by some MPs on our behalf. They built their glory and got reelected on rhetorical basis of having the government’s hand in sending “their people” and voters in their constituency for overseas medical treatments.

In other words, their electoral key is to provide overseas medical trips to their constituents, even if the case is just pain in a toe.

This is not a joke. One of my friends said this to me while strolling along the famous French street Champs Élysées, where the headquarters of Kuwait’s Health Office is located; just imagine the extravagance of this situation.

My friend met a compatriot who was strolling down the street wearing shorts and with a gauze bandage covering one of his toes. When he was asked what brought him to Paris, the fortunate compatriot responded by saying, “I felt a sudden pain in my toe”.

Going back to Dr Hamada, this noble official is of the kind that is rarely found, not because of lack of sincere people but because of fear of repercussions that come from speaking the truth. This is due to the fact that the medical tourism legislators will get even with the ministry by pursuing malicious inquiries related to their target who attempted to expose their cheap means of blackmailing the ministry and subduing its senior officials who, in this case, are in Ministry of Health.

This is exactly what we saw in the past years, with the exception of Dr Jamal Al-Harbi who was dismissed from his position via a controversial ministerial reshuffle, even though he had not completed his first year of seriousness and sincerity.

In reality, he was dismissed in order to sedate the headache that he had become to those who form our Kuwaiti Cabinet. In fact, one of the members of this controversial and outrageous assembly had proposed the establishment of a health office in Turkey. The reason is simple. It is for those who run from the law and end up living in Turkey in order to escape from serving final court sentences.

This influential MP, who fulfilled his promise of returning withdrawn citizenship, wants to add in his controversial parliamentary record the issue of medical treatment for dissenters and law violators who have been found guilty and sentenced to serve jail terms.

If the government agrees to this in the way it agreed on the issue of restoring withdrawn citizenship, which represented a sheer demonstration of violation and trumping down of laws, we will give it the title of “government of corruption”, as we have become sick and tired of corruption even in Ministry of Health.

By Ali Ahmed Al-Baghli

Former Minister of Oil

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