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Monday , September 26 2022

MP raps extension of grace period for expats – ‘Deport them’

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KUWAIT CITY, March 2: MP Abdulkareem Al-Kandari has criticized the decision of the Interior Ministry to extend the grace period given to expatriates, who violated the Residency Law, to legalize their status or leave the country.

He emphasized the need to deport these expatriates, instead of encouraging others to violate the Residency Law and increase the crowd in areas where a large number of expatriates are residing. He said the decision of the ministry reflects its inability to enforce the law and this entails wastage of public funds.

Meanwhile, a number of current and former MPs attended the solidarity meeting held at the diwaniya of MP Badr Al- Dahoum recently with the theme, “Al Dahoum … You are not alone,” to express their support for him in dealing with an appeal filed at the Constitutional Court against the ruling confirming the validity of his parliamentary membership.

The appeal was submitted after the Court of Cassation issued its final ruling affirming that the candidacy of Al-Dahoum in the 2020 parliamentary elections is valid and that he met all the conditions for contesting the election. The Constitutional Court will rule on the appeal on March 3. Constitutional expert Dr Muhammad Al-Muqatei explained the Constitutional Court is authorized to rule on appeals regarding the entire election, not the parliamentary membership of a lawmaker.

A press conference followed the meeting at Al-Dahoum’s diwaniya, during which several MPs delivered speeches expressing support for him. They clarified that they have no intention to go against the judiciary as their main aim is to ensure the latter is not dragged into political disputes. They also agreed that the target of the appeal is not Al-Dahoum, but all the pro-reform MPs.

MP Abdulaziz Al-Saqaabi reacted to objections to the meeting under the pretext that it is tantamount to interfering in the affairs of the judicial authority. He cited Article 173 of the Constitution to highlight the special nature of Constitutional Court. This article states that: “The law shall determine the competent legal authority to deal with the settlement of disputes in respect to the constitutionality of laws and regulations and shall determine this authority’s jurisdiction and the procedure it shall follow.

The law shall guarantee to both the government and those concerned the right to challenge the constitutionality of laws and regulations before that authority. Where the aforementioned authority rules the law or the regulation to be unconstitutional, that law or regulation shall be deemed null and void.” In another development, the Housing Affairs Committee on Tuesday met with representatives of the Public Authority for Housing Welfare (PAHW).

Committee Chairman MP Fayez Al- Jomhour said they discussed the recommendation to assign a real estate developer for South Saad Al-Abdullah residential area, indicating the panel unanimously rejected the suggestion. Nevertheless, the committee agreed on the designation of real estate developers in small residential areas on experimental basis followed by an evaluation of the results to pave way for application of the same system in big residential areas if the experiment succeeds, he added.

MP Badr Al-Mullah commented to a news report that Kuwait National Petroleum Corporation (KNPC) asked the Ministry of Finance and Public Authority for Industry (PAI) to pay KD 15 billion for oil exploration and production. The lawmaker said this news disappointed the public as it shows KNPC has the upper hand over the State. He stressed the need to amend the decree concerning KNPC, while pointing out that the corporation is involved in huge investment projects so it cannot afford to hand over the retained profits to the State and even tries to take money from the State. He called for re-evaluation of the performance of KNPC’s Board of Directors as the oil sector continues to incur losses, while the completion of vital projects such as the environmental fuel and Zour Refinery is delayed. He asserted the request of KNPC is unacceptable, especially this time when oil revenues cannot cover salaries.

Furthermore, MP Abdullah Al-Turaiji forwarded queries to interim Minister of Interior Sheikh Thamer Ali Al-Sabah about the information he received that a truck driver escaped from Shuwaikh Port on Feb 9 after offloading suspicious cargo and then returned after four days with the same modus operandi. He wants to know the steps taken regarding the incident, if Shuwaikh Port has a security unit or a police station, and if yes, what action has been taken against the truck driver and anyone behind the incident.

He also requested for copies of records of similar cases if any and names of the accused if a lawsuit in this regard was filed. He forwarded similar questions to interim Minister of Finance Khalifa Hamada, indicating he wants to know the measures that the ministry has taken regarding the incident, results of investigations, name and nationality of the truck driver and the sponsor, country where the truck came from, company which sent the cargo, the receiving company in Kuwait, and customs employees who were on duty at the port on Feb 9 and when the truck returned to the port four days later.

By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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