Amir accepts resignation of Cabinet, names it caretaker

KUWAIT: HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah (left) hands the government’s resignation letter to HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al- Sabah yesterday. — KUNA

KUWAIT: HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah yesterday accepted the resignation of the Cabinet which was submitted to him by the prime minister amid indications that the formation of the new Cabinet could take weeks. The resignation came as expected following a no-confidence motion filed against Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs and acting Information Minister Sheikh Mohammad Al-Abdullah Al-Sabah following a grilling last Tuesday on the National Assembly’s opening day.

Sheikh Mohammad was grilled over alleged financial and administrative violations, which he categorically denied. The government’s resignation came after a large number of lawmakers announced their support for the no-confidence motion, which threatens to dismiss the minister if the motion succeeds.

HH the Amir asked outgoing Prime Minister HH Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah and his ministers to remain as a caretaker Cabinet until a new government is formed. Under the constitution, the Amir has the sole right to name a new prime minister or ask the outgoing premier to form a new Cabinet.

National Assembly speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanem told reporters that he was officially informed of the resignation and that he will announce this at the start of today’s scheduled Assembly session. But he said he will adjourn the session and will not call for new Assembly sessions before the formation of the new Cabinet. Under Kuwaiti constitution, Assembly sessions are illegal if no Cabinet minister is attending.

Ghanem gave no timeframe for the formation of the Cabinet amid indications by sources that the process could be a lengthy one and might take weeks. There is no official deadline for the formation of the Cabinet under normal circumstances. Due to political disputes between the government and the Assembly since 2006, at least a dozen governments have stepped down, mostly over disputes with MPs. The Assembly was also dissolved seven times in the same period.

In another development, the lower court yesterday set Nov 20 to look into a case in which a Kuwaiti citizen is suing the government for allowing certain expatriates to enroll their children in public schools. The case, filed by lawyer Ibrahim Al-Bathani on behalf of a Kuwaiti citizen, claims the education ministry is violating the law. The citizen insists that the law explicitly stipulates that public schools are for Kuwaitis only, but the government allows certain categories of expats like teachers and judges to enroll their children at such schools.

By B Izzak

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