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Impossible offence

Ali Ahmed Al-Baghli

PUBLIC Authority of Manpower (PAM) is one of the many unnecessary government authorities in the country. Some embarrassing facts, events and decisions related to the authority were recently exposed. The first embarrassing decision the authority took was to impose a fine on the Catholic Church of Kuwait for not employing Kuwaitis.

In response, the Church told the authority that there are unfortunately no Catholic Kuwaitis to work in the Church such as priests, janitors or messengers. Elusive to the authority is the geniuses behind the unjust law issued by one of our grim parliaments in the 1980s that bars naturalization of non-Muslims — a law that we have dubbed as a shameful law.

One of our colleagues had highlighted this shameful law in an article. We suggest to this authority, which was eager to collect the penalty of KD 300 to add to the Treasury, to lobby or put pressure on the current parliamentarians to amend the shameful law so that the country can have Catholic Kuwaitis.

Only after such an amendment can the Catholic Church of Kuwait be fined for committing this offence which is currently impossible to commit. Public Authority of Manpower’s move was revealed in the response to a parliamentary question. As per the response, which was signed by the State Minister of Economy Affairs Maryam Al-Aqeel, the authority concerned with “Kuwaitization” had terminated the services of only ten expatriates in the last four years.

We don’t know who replaced those ten expatriates — other expatriates or Kuwaitis. The minister’s response also revealed that the number of grievances filed by Kuwaitis working in Public Authority of Manpower against the authority reached 472, and the number of complaints filed during the same period reached 611.

This authority, which was established to lift injustice and arbitrate issues related to Kuwaiti employees, has aggrieved these employees. A testimony to that fact is the high number of grievances and complaints filed against the authority. This public authority is tantamount to the adage that goes — “A sick doctor healing people”

Email: ali-albaghli@hotmail.com

By Ali Ahmed Al-Baghli

Former Minister of Oil

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