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Wednesday , August 17 2022

Lest the historical speech fades … Build a state of equity, restore its pearl and exit its ‘adversity’

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HISTORY will always remember that the royal speech of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad, delivered by His Highness Crown Prince Sheikh Mishaal Al-Ahmad on his behalf,  set a new foundation for Kuwait.

We thought we were blowing into a torn horn everytime we expressed our concerns about the country and its people, but the royal speech made us realize that the political leadership is closely monitoring everything and paying attention to what is being said and published.

This is contrary to what was portrayed by His Highness the Prime Minister and the absurd struggle in the National Assembly, which made us fear and assume that our concerns were hitting deaf ears and the mojo of our country had expired – a country that was once the “Pearl of the Gulf”.

This historical stance must be met by steps from the people and officials, each in his capacity. Everyone should pay attention to what serves the future of the country, especially in this sensitive stage and the pressing international situation at all levels.

Here is where the principle of “every era of a country has its men” can be applied, while they work to salvage the country and rescue it from the confusion and lack of will to make decisions on serious affairs, away from electoral mileage and narrow calculations.

Likewise, the ministerial position or any senior executive position in the ministries should not be transformed into an honorary one, but there should be the absolute belief that it is an official task of great significance and a burden of trust that cannot be handled lightly under any circumstance or enticements.

Your Highness the Amir and Your Highness the Crown Prince, there is no doubt that fairness is the basis of justice. This can only be achieved by addressing the problems of large segments of the people who suffer the most, because yesterday’s state refused to help these people.

This includes the issue of loan cancellation, which was what the neighboring countries did, as they cancelled the debts of their citizens and set realistic conditions for re-borrowing. This had contributed to the financial cycle of the state, and prevented any creditor or usurer from lending to a citizen who is not financially solvent. This is in accordance with the popular proverb – The sheep does not perish and the wolf does not die.

Unfortunately, in Kuwait, there are envious and stingy people who are ungrateful. They ogle at what is in the hands of others, even if it is a breadcrumb, with the aim of devouring it.

The people today want a clear housing policy that serves them and not the real estate dealers and contractors, as it is unreasonable for the beneficiary of housing care to wait for 15 to 20 years to get his house while the state pays rent allowance amounting to more than KD 2.9 billion to employees annually when the solution is in the state’s hands. With a single decision, this amount, which is sufficient to build integrated residential cities, can be saved. Isn’t that reasonable in this regard?

This problem is part of what was caused by the deep state, in which the utilitarians and opportunists took over everything in the country. Therefore, if there is any seriousness in returning to the state of equity, there must be executives working in the light, and not making deals at night and obstructing everything.

Your Highness the Amir and Your Highness the Crown Prince, the people of today want the state of today to restore Kuwait’s spirit, which was stifled by chains of prohibitions imposed by the currents of puritanism and cultural backwardness. Therefore, the oxygen of recreation facilities needs to return so as to end the expelling of people who, as we mentioned earlier, merely hear about a holiday without rushing to all border crossings in order to go to other countries, especially the neighboring ones, to enjoy their time there.

Once upon a time, Kuwait was the recreational destination for our neighboring brothers. It used to be the arena for recreation, personal freedom, and tourism. Even in the midst of the hot summer days, the country used to wake up to an intellectual seminar or an entertainment festival, and sleep after a cultural and artistic evening.

However, when you look at today’s Kuwait, there is no place for entertainment. If there is, it is usually more expensive than anywhere in the world.

Your Highness the Amir and Your Highness the Crown Prince, Kuwaitis today want a country free from organized lootings, continuous squandering of public money, and tailored tenders that made infrastructure and projects worse than anywhere in the world, while what is remaining is expensive.

These people aspire for a bold and major decision to stop corruption, even if it is against the ruling family members, expel officials who have descended with parachutes on positions and tasks greater than them, and seek a sound administration that does not suffer from the diseases of favoritism, wasta and nepotism temperaments in order to have a capable and strong state, and not farms and yards of mutual interests.

It is not possible for any citizen in this situation to choose his representatives with free conscience, because he remains linked to tribal and sectarian clientelism and mutual interests and benefits.

Your Highness the Amir and Your Highness the Crown Prince, what the people want today is a state that thrives and progresses, as is the case with its counterparts in the Gulf states, and not a state of slogans about democracy that impedes more than it produces. They also want an end to the boasting of not being a state of one-man show, whereas such countries have prospered and advanced under the leadership of one man while we are going backwards every day.

The real challenge is for everyone to work according to the directions and broad lines that your Highness have drawn for us, which give us the choice between creating a future that befits Kuwait, or continuing to retrogress in all aspects.

All that the people hope for now is that those concerned do not act according to their whims, lest render this historical speech devoid of its contents and fade away as previous speeches in the past, and everyone attests to that.

By Ahmed Al-Jarallah

Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times