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GRILLING MOTIONS, DISAGREEMENTS OVER BILLS BEHIND MOVE
KUWAIT CITY, Jan 23: The government resigned Monday — a day before the ordinary sessions slated for Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss certain bills and the grilling motions against two ministers. HH the Crown Price Sheikh Meshal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah accepted the resignation of the 42nd government just a few months after its formation on Oct 16, 2022. It is believed that the resignation is due to disagreements between the two authorities, as well as the grilling motions.
The government is said to have been uncooperative with the National Assembly regarding bills that the latter has been pushing for approval such as the proposed ‘purchasing’ of citizens’ loans. MP Soud Al-Asfour said the government “was born dead and it failed to communicate with the National Assembly. The resignation could be a good chance for the next prime minister — Sheikh Ahmad Al-Nawaf or another — to tread the right path by appointing ministers with the ability to execute the government’s program.” He pointed out the program is ready and all that remains to be done is to choose competent ministers. “As per the Constitution, the new government should be formed within two weeks after the acceptance of the resignation of its predecessor,” he added.
MP Hamad Al-Obaid praised the decision of His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Ahmad Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al- Sabah to submit the resignation of the government, as well as the suspension of the exceptional salaries for ministers. He affirmed the latter decision is a way to rectify a wrong action — the inappropriate implementation of Article 80 of the Social Security Law. MP Jenan Bu Shehri asserted the decision to suspend the exceptional salaries for ministers proves that she was right in submitting a grilling motion against former Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Barrak Al-Sheetan. She believes the decision is a step in the right direction.
MP Mubarak Al-Tasha said he is not concerned about the resignation of the government, as the most important move now is to form a government that is capable of fulfilling its promises and addressing the citizens’ demands. He thinks the government had been confused about many things like the selection of ministers, setting priorities and dealing with the Assembly. He also disclosed that he advised Sheikh Ahmad Nawaf to change some ministers to ensure harmony within the ministerial team, but the latter did not respond. He added the government insisted on continuing the same approach until it reached the point of resignation despite receiving the full support of the political leadership, lawmakers and citizens.
He stressed the need to immediately appoint the new prime minister and form the new government in the interest of citizens. He urged the next premier to follow in the footsteps of HH the late Sheikh Nasser Sabah Al-Ahmad who was devoted in combating corruption. He emphasized the next period is critical; hence, the need for a government that truly serves the citizens and cooperates with the legislature. The government, which is appointed by the ruling family, has been in a prolonged power struggle with the elected assembly.
They had recently clashed over the assembly’s advancement of populist measures that the government deems too costly, as well as requests to grill two ministers over alleged economic mismanagement, local media reported. Kuwait has the freest and most active assembly in the Arabian Gulf, but political power is still concentrated in the hands of the ruling Al Sabah family, which appoints the prime minister and Cabinet, and can dissolve the assembly at any time. In September, voters sent conservative Islamist figures and two women to the assembly in the second election in less than two years. The election results were seen as a mandate for change amid a prolonged period of gridlock between the Cabinet and the 50-member assembly. Kuwait’s Islamist opposition accuses the government of graft and mismanagement, frequently grilling ministers over their involvement in the
By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff and Agencies