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There are well-known government agencies that do not work or do not produce almost anything, including the Qur’an Printing Authority, which did not print a single copy of the Qur’an for eleven years, and the Roads Authority, whose work was paralyzed by the Ministry of Works for years, then the current minister came and slashed the powers of the authority and pushed its director and his deputy to resign.
There are also other parties, such as the Qur’an memorization houses affiliated with the Ministry of Awqaf, which do not follow a specific system in their work, but leaves it at the discretion of those who want to learn and those who make an effort to come are not seen the next day, and/or even disappear altogether. The employees are those who want to get good salary, in exchange for a comfortable job, or no work at all.
The Minister of Justice and the Minister of Awqaf did not like the “leaning situation” in the Qur’an memorization houses, so he issued a decision requiring that working hours be in accordance with the decisions of the Civil Service Council, and with the general work system in the state, which is no less than 7 working hours!
This decision angered the employees in these houses, who barely show up in their offices, and if that happens, they work for two or three hours, and almost all of them have arranged their lives on this basis, years ago, and implementing the minister’s decision means causing disruption to their lifestyle and comfort, and will expose them in the future to salary deductions because of absence.
Therefore, the employees of such houses demonstrated and staged a sit-in, and it is one of the rare times that some state employees sit-in to demand that they be allowed to violate the law.
They also called on their representatives in the National Assembly to move and put pressure on the minister, the ministry’s regulations, and the Civil Service Bureau, so that they are excluded from working hours unlike 350,000 government employees, excluded from the Civil Service Law, and continue to allow them to work three hours and continue to receive their full salaries like the one who works 8 hours a day, in dangerous situations and open areas and others.
To this day, the situation is absurd, disturbing, and completely immoral on the part of the protesters. To add insult to injury, more than twenty deputies intervened, purely for electoral interests, to support the protesters demands against the Minister of Justice and Minister of Awqaf, Mr. Abdulaziz Al-Majed, and demanded that he withdraw his decision, and threatened him with interrogation if he rejected their demands, and that they would interrogate him even if he returned as Minister of Awqaf in the next ministry.
These deputies also described the minister’s decision as tightening on the employees of these houses. This represents, in my opinion, the height of government laxity and indolence in dealing with such lawlessness with firmness.
How can more than twenty legislators describe amending a system as restriction, and threaten the minister with interrogation if he rejects their illegal, illogical, or immoral demands? Is this a workshop or a shop?
There is no doubt that the working hours, do not mean anything. What matters is productivity, not the number of working hours. In our case in Kuwait, what counts is the number of hours of presence at the workplace not productivity.
Until this system is changed to a more realistic and more flexible one, it is absurd to ask some to exclude them from the eight-hour shift and make it only three, just because the issue is religious.
It is also shameful that some involved children in complaining about the minister’s decision related to the implementation of the law, because it prevents them from seeing their mothers, as if the children of other employees are of a different kind?
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By Ahmad alsarraf