Syndicate says minister wants to deprive oil workers of privileges

KUWAIT: Chairman of Kuwait Engineers Syndicate (KES) Abdul Wahab Al-Kandari stressed that KES would strongly respond to Finance Minister and Acting Oil Minister Anas Al-Saleh’s intentions to ‘sell’ the oil sector through amending the privatization law, which would deprive the sector employees of all their privileges. “Although the head of the parliamentary human resources committee Dr Khalil Abdullah and the committee rapporteur Ahmed Lari reassured everybody that amendments to the payroll strategic alternative law would not affect current employees or their allowances, Saleh has blown all assurances away and limited the assurances to salaries and indemnities,” he said, noting that accordingly, salaries would be frozen until retirement.

Kandari added that such moves would mean ungratefulness to the efforts exerted by oil sector engineers and employees. “We will never accept being used as scapegoats to sell the state’s sole resource,” he added, warning that salaries would not exceed KD 700 with a maximum 3.5 percent annual increase.

“The cost of keeping Saleh in office will be very high for everybody. We are all in the same boat, so either we all safely sail to the shore or we all sink together,” he warned, undermining the assurances made by Saleh because he had broken earlier promises he made not to suspend overseas training courses. “Decision-making within the oil sector is kidnapped by another Cabinet member whose family owns huge shares of commercial interests in the oil sector and many senior officials have been sacrificed to maintain those interests,” he said.

Finally, Kandari addressed Kuwait Petroleum Corporation’s (KPC) CEO Nizar Al-Adsani, urging him to support his staff and not to be isolated from them by the minister’s instructions. Commenting on the same issue, Chairman of Kuwait Gulf Oil Company’s (KGOC) employees syndicate Faleh Al-Ajmi urged all employees to unite to “protect the oil sector” from what he described as abusive decisions undermining employees’ rights. Ajmi added that oil employees’ rights were being unlawfully and surprisingly violated.

Lawsuit
Chairman of the labor union at the Public Authority for Housing Welfare (PAHW) Abdul Rahman Al-Ghanem filed a lawsuit against his predecessor and the members of the previous board of directors, demanding investigating the volume and sources of their finances.

Jamal Abdul Nasser road
Assistant Undersecretary for Roadworks at the Ministry of Public Works (MPW) Ahmed Al-Hessan said that 36 percent of the west intersections along Jamal Abdul Nasser road were completed and that renovation and connection of the current sewage lines would be finished within 15 days.

Municipality campaign
Hawally municipality inspection teams launched several inspection campaigns during the recent national celebrations which resulted in nabbing scores of peddlers, confiscating five truckloads of toys and foodstuff as well as removing 78 illegal ads. The raids were made along the Gulf Road, in Salmiya, Hawally and marine Shaab.
Hessan added that the KD 34.9 million project aims at boosting the road’s capacity, reduce traffic congestions, reduce traffic accidents and achieve high security levels.

By Meshaal Al-Enezi

This article was published on 29/02/2016