Opposition MPs urge PM to quit

KUWAIT: In a series of dramatic developments yesterday, the National Assembly approved a request by the government to refer a grilling against the Prime Minister to study if the grilling was in line with the constitution. Opposition MPs immediately called the measure as illegal, called on Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah to step down and held Speaker Marzouk Al-Ghanem and pro-government lawmakers responsible for violating the law.

The Assembly decision was taken in a secret session demanded by the government and came after a debate, Ghanem told reporters. He said the Assembly approved the government request and the grilling has been referred to the committee without providing further details. He also declined to say how long the committee was given to study the issue.

A few weeks ago, the committee ruled that a similar grilling filed by MP Shuaib Al-Muwaizri was in breach of the constitution and it was not debated. MP Abdulkarim Al-Kundari, who filed the grilling this time accusing the prime minister of failing to implement development programs and curb corruption, said by refusing to face two grillings, the prime minister who cannot face a lawmaker is incapable of running a country.

In the meantime, opposition MPs issued two statements, each signed by seven MPs (a total of 10 MPs in both) calling on the prime minister to resign, saying that there is no hope to establish any cooperation with the government. In the first statement, the opposition MPs described the procedures in the Assembly yesterday by the majority of MPs to refer the premier grilling to the legal committee as “unconstitutional and illegal”.
The statement held the Assembly Speaker responsible for accepting the motion and allowing the voting to take place in violation of the Assembly internal charter. The statement described what happened as an attempt to stop grilling and weaken parliamentary supervision which calls for non-cooperation with the government for violating the constitution and the law.

MPs Abdulkarim Al-Kundari, Riyadh Al-Adasani, Abdulwahab Al-Babtain, Bader Al-Mulla, Shuaib Al-Muwaizri, Hamdan Al-Azemi and Omar Al-Tabtabai signed the statement.

The second statement, also signed by seven MPs, said that the government boycott of the special session on Sunday and the killing of two grillings against the prime minister, indicates that the aggression of the government on the rights of the National Assembly has become a permanent methodology.
The lawmakers declared their non-cooperation with the government, calling for the resignation of the government and appointing a new prime minister. Kundari described the eight years since the prime minister was appointed as the worst political period and the worst National Assembly with some MPs refusing the government to be touched. The Speaker said that the Assembly will hold sessions today and tomorrow and that it will hold six sessions in June to approve the budgets and a number of legislation.

By B Izzak

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