KUWAIT: The Kuwaiti people will always remember their Father Amir Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, who passed away 11 years ago, for his uncontested patriotism and relentless affirmation that “Kuwait is always first.” On May 13, 2008, Kuwaitis lost their Father Amir who dedicated his life for the service of his country, as well as security and stability of his homeland in a unique fashion. “Kuwait is always first” was the phrase the Father Amir uttered at the inauguration of the 9th Legislative Session of the National Assembly to underline a firm fact that Kuwait would always remain above everyone.
Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah, the 14th ruler of the State of Kuwait, was named Amir on January 15, 2006. The Father Amir is the Fourth Amir since the Constitution was enacted by his father, then Amir Sheikh Abdullah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, on November 11, 1962. Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah contributed to the establishment of the constitution as a member in the drafting committee. In January 1978, then Amir Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah nominated Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah as Crown Prince. In February of the same year, Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah was appointed Prime Minister to form the 10th Government in Kuwait’s history since independence. Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah kept the two posts until 2003, when the Prime Minister’s post was separated from the Crown Prince thus paving way for appointment of current Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah as Prime Minister, who formed the country’s 21st government.
Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah occupied senior posts even before becoming a Crown Prince in 1978, especially in the security field. He was deputy police chief in 1945-49. He became Interior Minister in 1962 and a Defense Minister in 1964, making him the architect of Kuwait’s modern security policy. However, Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah, a security officer himself, paid a great attention to the development of the military and security institutions. He established the Police School in 1956 and kept on developing the police force and established, for example, the Criminal Evidence Department in 1961. The Supreme Defense Council was established in 1963 and contributed to the development of the defense policy.
Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah was a true statesman who was also known as the ‘Liberation Hero’ because he masterminded the liberation of State of Kuwait from the Iraqi occupation in 1990-91. The Father Amir, at the early hours of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait on August 2, 1990, insisted that then Amir Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah leave Kuwait to maintain legitimacy of the country. During Iraq’s seven-month occupation, Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah embarked on several international tours to explain Kuwait’s just causes. He also supervised conditions of the Kuwaiti people inside Kuwait, as well as supported the Kuwaiti resistance in every means possible. Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah was the first senior government official to return to Kuwait following the liberation and declared martial laws in order to restore security and stability in Kuwait.
Then Amir Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad appointed in April 1991 Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah as Prime Minister of a government tasked with rebuilding the country. Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah was up to the task. He worked relentlessly to rebuilding the country and its institutions, restored order and dealt with the largest environmental disaster, the gigantic fire and oil leak caused when Iraqi forces torched over 700 oil wells just before leaving the country.
Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah organized parliamentary elections in 1992, and the first post-liberation National Assembly was in place on October 20 the same year. The Father Amir also paid a special attention to the Kuwaiti missing and prisoners of war. He was named Amir on January 15, 2006 following the demise of Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad. However, due to his health condition, His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad became Amir on January 29, 2006 through constitutional measures. The Father Amir passed away at his residence in Al-Shaab Palace the morning of May 13, 2008 and an official mourning was declared, ending a life full of achievements that every Kuwaiti would always remember. – KUNA