Parliament ‘cancels’ ordinary session due to govt’s absence
KUWAIT CITY, May 25: The National Assembly cancelled its ordinary session on Tuesday after Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim received information that the government will not attend the session, because several MPs occupied the front seats allocated for the ministers. Al-Ghanim announced that the next ordinary session will be held on June 8 and 9. He then distributed invitations to the MPs and government to the special session slated for Thursday. He disclosed the agenda of the special session includes the following: 1. Oath taking of MP-elect Obaid Al-Wasmi as per Article 91 of the Constitution, 2. Proposal of the government to allocate additional budget for the incentive of frontline employees dealing with the Covid-19 crisis to be included in the State budget for fiscal 2020/ 2021, 3. Proposal to discuss the Israeli attacks on Palestinian people and report of the parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee on the bill about the amendment of law number 21/ 1964 on confronting attempts to normalize relations between Kuwait and Israel. Al-Ghanim added the National Assembly Office will meet soon to specify the dates for the proposed special sessions.
In a related development, MPs Khalid Al-Otaibi, Fares Al-Otaibi, Mubarak Al-Hajraf, Abdulkareem Al-Kandari, Thamer Al-Suwait, Soud Bu Sleeb, Marzouq Al-Khalifa and Musaed Al-Ardi occupied the chairs allocated for the ministers. MP Saleh Ziab Al-Mutairi raised a piece of paper with the phrase “get out”, addressing His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al- Khalid. He said that occupying the seats allocated for the ministers is a peaceful message and it is not considered instigation of chaos as the front seats are not made especially for ministers. He concluded that Kuwait deserves something better. MP-elect Obaid Al-Wasmi argued that cancelling the session in the presence of 40 MPs is a violation of the Constitution and a deviation from normal political attitude. He asserted the Assembly is not a committee or subsidiary of the Cabinet.
Meanwhile, the MPs who met on Monday in the house of MP Musaed Al-Ardi to unify their position on the cancelled session formed the 30 MPs bloc. They also formed a coordinative committee with MPs Hassan Jawhar, Marzouq Al-Khalifa, Muhammad Al- Mutair, Abdulaziz Al-Saqaabi, Al- SaifiMubarak Al-Saifiand Mutei Al- Azmi as members. Former MP Bader Al-Dahoum was appointed as General Coordinator of the committee. On the other hand, 25 MPs submitted a proposal to hold a special session on May 30 to discuss the recommendation of MP Al- SaifiMubarak Al-Saifito amend the National Assembly Decree in order to allow the MPs to dismiss the speaker. In addition, MP Osama Al- Menawer submitted a bill on amending Infectious Diseases Law number 8/ 1969. The bill obligates the State to shoulder the cost of vaccines against all infectious diseases for citizens, as well as other expenses such as institutional quarantine and plane tickets for citizens who are abroad. Also, MP Marzouq Al-Khalifa forwarded queries to Minister of Health Dr Basel Al-Sabah about the Astra- Zeneca-Oxford vaccine procured by a local agent. He wants to know the source of the vaccine and if it meets the criteria and quality standards set by Work Health Organization (WHO). By Saeed Mahmoud Saleh Arab Times Staff