MP calls for stronger visa law enforcement

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KUWAIT CITY, Feb 14: National Assembly Speaker Ahmed Al-Saadoun adjourned the supplementary session slated for Wednesday until March 5-6, 2024 due to the absence of the government. Al-Saadoun disclosed that Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Sheriada Al-Meosherji and HH the Deputy Amir and Prime Minister Sheikh Dr Mohammad Sabah Al- Salem Al-Sabah called him earlier to inform him that the government would not attend the session. Items in the agenda of the adjourned session include the fourth report of the Legal and Legislative Affairs Committee about the proposed amendment of the National Assembly Election Law and establishment of the Higher Commission for Elections, as well as the continuation of the MPs’ response to the Amiri speech delivered at the inaugural session held on Oct 31, 2023.

In a related development, constitutional expert Professor Ibrahim Al-Homoud commented about the voting on removing the statement of MP Abdulkareem Al-Kandari regarding the Amiri speech from the minutes of the previous session. He said Al-Kandari convinced his colleagues to vote in his favor, while both the government and Al-Saadoun committed mistakes. He explained that Al-Saadoun should not have voted on the issue, and he should have adhered to Article 39 of the National Assembly Law and submitted the objection to the minutes of the previous session to the Assembly Office for the latter to take a decision. He added the government should have objected to the voting since the subject for voting is unconstitutional. He cited Article 92 of the Constitution, stating that the Amiri entity is protected and sacred. He added the government must highlight the fact that a constitutional violation should not be a subject for voting. Al-Homoud’s comment is in line with the opinion about linking the absence of the government and the approval of the MPs to keep the statement of Al-Kandari in the minutes of the session.

Meanwhile, MP Bader Sayyar Al-Shimmari disclosed that he met with several ministers; during which he confirmed the government is now aware that the Assembly’s cooperation with the executive authority is connected to the latter’s commitment to push for the ratification of popular bills and its response to the citizens’ demands. He urged HH the Prime Minister to monitor the statements of ministers. He said Minister of Education, Higher Education and Scientific Research Adel Al-Adwani did not apologize for stating the teachers. He added the minister insists on applying the fingerprint attendance system on teachers, warning that the minister could cause a catastrophe in the educational sector if he continues in this position. He also clarified the viral video of himself while he was on a telephone call with a senior official at the Ministry of Interior, asking the latter to facilitate the entry and exit of laborers in under-construction residential areas. He stressed that he is proud of this video; adding he will meet with Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense and acting Minister of Interior Sheikh Fahad Yusuf Al-Sabah to ask him to intensify the crackdown on Residency Law violators, as well as facilitate the entry and exit of legal construction laborers to the under-construction residential areas. He pointed out the residents in these areas have been deprived of their basic needs like drinking water and electricity. He revealed that they use their own money for these basic needs, because of the failure of the government to cover such needs.

He argued that toughening security procedures should be done in other areas like Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh. He then asked the government to suspend the collection of payment for loans that the citizens obtained from Kuwait Credit Bank (KCB) for the construction of their houses until basic services like water, electricity and security are provided.

On the other hand, Disabled Affairs Committee Chairman MP Saud Al-Asfour confirmed that the committee received the joint reply of the Public Authority for Disabled Affairs (PADA) and the Ministry of Finance about the decree to return the ratified bill on amending Disabled Affairs Law No. 8/2010 to the Assembly. He revealed the reply includes the cost of implementing the bill in the budgets of PADA and the Public Institution for Social Security (PIFSS).

According to Finance Ministry, the cost is estimated at KD111,775,000; while the actual cost for PIFSS has not been specified. Al-Asfour pointed out errors in the figures because the ministry based such figures on a copy of a draft law that is different from the ratified bill. He added the cost according to PIFSS is also based on the wrong interpretation of Article 42 of the ratified bill, since PIFSS considered the case of the second individual assigned to take care of the same disabled person a retiree. He clarified that as per Article 42, the second caregiver deserves a full vacation with a full salary in case the disabled person needs a second caregiver and his disability requires full-time care. He added the committee discussed the report and comments of the concerned public institutions, as well as the joint report of the ministry and PADA; disclosing the committee decided to make some changes to some articles to address these comments. He said Article One was amended to clearly define the word ‘disabled’; while Article Two stating that the beneficiaries include Kuwaiti women taking care of a disabled non-Kuwaiti first-degree relative remained the same. He also affirmed that there were no changes to Article 41 on the right of the disabled worker to retire after 10 years in service for both men and women, and Article 42 on the right of an individual with severe and permanent disability to have two caregivers as per the decision of the concerned medical committee. He added the committee maintained the right of a caregiver to retire after spending 15 years in service for both men and women, affirming that the committee will finalize its report soon for inclusion in the agenda of the next session.

Moreover, the Secretariat General of the Assembly issued a statement denying the rumor that it terminated several Bedoun employees, clarifying it just decided not to renew the employment contracts of those who refused to renew their security cards. It pointed out that this step is aimed at addressing the comments of the State Audit Bureau (SAB) and in line with Amiri decree number 467/ 2010 on the establishment of the Central System for Remedying the Status of Illegal Residents (CSRSIR). It then cited the regulation of CSRSIR, stating that Bedouns are allowed to sign employment contracts only if they hold a valid security card.

By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh
Al-Seyassah/Arab Times Staff

This news has been read 5281 times!

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