‘Wasta’ plays role in top jobs

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Exam results show favoritism

KUWAIT CITY, Feb 27: The results of the interviews to fill vacancies at the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation have met the dissatisfaction of a big number of the applicants and observers, who speak openly about the lack of transparency and evaluation criteria, reports Al-Qabas daily. At a time when it is necessary to put on offer equal opportunities and limit nepotism in appointments in state agencies, Al-Qabas sources reported that the failure rate at the KPC was 90%, and among those who fail are graduates who have studied in world renowned international universities known for their competence and distinction, and this raises doubts and challenge the credibility of the results. A number of graduates who gave interviews have submitted grievances to the concerned authorities and the list is growing.

They complain about unfairness and unequal opportunities, saying “the results show clear favouritism since the sons of senior officials in the oil sector and sons of university professors and other influential people have managed to pass interviews with ease,” pointing to “the possibility of some influential people knowing the questions and answers that were prepared by a specialized company.

The complainants pointed out that this very fact challenges the credibility of the tests, and raise suspicions of conflict of interest. The aggrieved graduates say the results of the exams have frustrated dozens of applicants, after it became clear that male and female graduates of prestigious international universities were unable to pass the exams, even though they graduated with an “excellent” grade. On the other hand, the least of them succeeded, indicating that they would resort to the judiciary to seek justice. High failure rates in petroleum tests, and the objection of a large number of graduates to what they described as “incapacitating tests” for appointment has increased doubts about the integrity of interviews to fill vacant jobs in the oil sector.

Informed sources told the daily the results of the recent interviews which were supervised by the Kuwait University personnel has generated a big surprise, as the failure rates were high, and allegedly reached about 90% of the applicants for the specialization exams. One of the applicants who was not accepted said, “She went to the KPC to request her right to check the results and she was told to check with the Center for Discrimination and Measurement, and when she visited the center, she was told to check with the Kuwait University, and the university directed her to the KPC” and she went on to say, “until today I have not been able to view the results.” Via the Al-Qabas daily the applicant wants to know why the KPC not listened to the complaints from the applicants who have given the interviews since many of questions in the interview had nothing to do with the specialization pertaining to the job. They also want to know why the results of the tests not announced in the media to implement the principle of transparency.

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