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Assembly hails ‘new era’ after Deputy Amir speech

KUWAIT: Lawmakers on Wednesday hailed the start of a “new era” as mentioned in a speech given by HH the Deputy Amir and Crown Prince Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah a day earlier in parliament. Kuwaiti citizens have “responded positively” to HH the Deputy Amir and Crown Prince’s speech that set in motion the start of the parliament’s new legislative term, said National Assembly Secretary Osama Al-Shaheen after talks with the parliament’s office members.

On some of the parliament’s new decisions, he said MP Shuaib Al-Muwaizri has been tasked with “studying the matter’ of information and cyber security within parliament itself, while another contingent of lawmakers will be looking into legal cases concerning the parliament. The National Assembly has also decided not to hire any more staff until a reassessment of its hiring policies is complete, which includes more efforts to “nationalize” jobs within parliament, Shaheen added. It will also review appointments made in the past few years.

Former National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanem sent congratulations to HH the Amir Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and HH the Deputy Amir and Crown Prince Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah on the inauguration of the new Assembly term. He also sent congratulations to National Assembly Speaker Ahmad Al-Saadoun and members of the parliament’s office and committees.

MP Abdulkarim Al-Kandari had submitted a proposal on Wednesday to the Assembly office calling to replace all expatriate employees at the National Assembly with Kuwaitis, including legal advisors and other staff. He added advertisements should be published to invite Kuwaitis to work at the Assembly. Kandari has been leading calls to reduce the number of expats in government jobs and replace them with Kuwaitis.

MP Majed Al-Mutairi announced he will discuss with the HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Ahmad Al-Nawaf Al-Sabah the situation of southern areas including Sabah Al-Ahmad, Wafra and Khairan, and the importance of providing services and a branch of Kuwait University and a college of applied sciences for residents. “The medical situation of residents of the fifth constituency is important, as it is not logical that a vast area from Sabah Al-Salem to Wafra has only one hospital in South Sabahiya. Therefore, we should restrict Adan Hospital only for Kuwaitis and South Sabahiya Hospital for expatriates,” Mutairi said.

The constitutional court meanwhile rejected petitions challenging the constitutionality of laws that govern citizenship issues and deportation of expatriates. Under these laws, courts are barred from looking into such cases because they are branded as sovereign issues and only the state can handle them. The petitions demanded to declare such laws unconstitutional, but the court rejected the petitions and confirmed that the laws are in line with the constitution.

Also on Wednesday, the court of appeals sentenced former interior ministry official Sheikh Mazen Al-Jarrah Al-Sabah and former parliament election candidate Nawaf Al-Shallahi to five years in prison and fined them KD 1,360,000 each on money laundering charges. The suspects were found guilty of receiving bribes from a Bangladeshi MP currently jailed in Kuwait to issue work permits illegally in order to bring in labor and facilitate human trafficking operations.


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