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MP submits bill on dodgy interest

KUWAIT CITY, March 20: MP Shuaib Al- Muwaizri has submitted a bill to refund the loan interest that banks and other financial institutions have illegally collected from clients. According to the bill, the Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK) will form a committee to review the loans that the local banks and financial institutions granted to their clients from 1992 till date. He suggested the concerned committee will assess the collected interest payments to ascertain they are in line with Law No. 32/1968 and 68/1980.

MP Shuaib Al-Muwaizri

In case the committee finds out that the interest payments were collected illegally, the concerned banks and financial institutions will be obliged to transfer the corresponding amount to the clients’ bank accounts or that of the heirs in case the beneficiary passed away.

The committee will submit reports to the Assembly every three months. Meanwhile, the parliamentary Interior and Defense Affairs Committee on Thursday discussed bills on amending the National Assembly Election Law and the law on disqualifying candidates convicted of offending others.

Chairman of the committee MP Mubarak Al- Arow disclosed that the government is uncooperative as it did not attend the meeting to present its opinion on these bills. He said the committee postponed talks on these bills until its next meeting in order to listen to the opinion of the government. He also affirmed the commitment of the committee to finalize its reports to pave way for their inclusion in the agenda of the upcoming session. On the other hand, the Budgets and Final Accounts Committee discussed last week the budget of Kuwait Anti- Corruption Authority (Nazaha) for fiscal 2021/2022 and its final accounts for fiscals 2018/2019 and 2019/2020.

The committee then issued a statement, revealing that the budget of Nazaha for fiscal 2021/2022 reached KD 10 million that is 26 percent higher than the previous year. The committee also tackled ways to reduce the budget in light of the current economic situation and coronavirus crisis, which resulted in limiting activities such as exhibitions and training courses. It affirmed strong coordination between Nazaha and the Ministry of Finance to reduce the budget and inform the committee about the results later.

It looked into the efforts exerted by Nazaha to combat corruption, indicating the authority has received 340 calls about corruption since its establishment. It deliberated on the appointment policy of Nazaha, during which it stressed the need to grant equal opportunities to applicants by minimizing the personal interview factor. It added that the Financial Controllers Bureau (FCB) praised the commitment of Nazaha to address violations as part of its efforts to protect public funds. MP Osama Al-Shaheen submitted a proposal for ministries and other public institutions to carry out public awareness campaigns aimed at encouraging citizens and expatriates to get vaccinated against coronavirus. He said these campaigns must urge citizens and expatriates to get vaccinated rather than forcing them to do so.

By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff

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