KUWAIT: Assistant Director General of Residency Affairs Major Gen Abdullah Al-Hajeri said there are strict instructions from the higher leadership to completely end the incidence of residency violators in Kuwait, who number 154,000 people of both genders. Deputy Premier and Interior Minister Sheikh Khalid Al-Jarrah Al-Sabah issued a decision last month allowing residency violators to leave the country before Feb 22, 2018 without paying fines.
Hajeri said the ministerial decision comes eight years after a similar amnesty given by HH the Amir in Feb 2011. He added the government is serious about implementing the law without exception, and will crack down on violators as the grace period will not be extended. He asked sponsors to hand over violators’ passports so they can leave and take advantage of the amnesty, unless they are wanted in other cases.
He said the following categories of violators are allowed to leave during the grace period:
- Those whose regular or temporary residencies expired before Jan 24, 2018.
- Those who entered the country on a visit, residency, tourism or transit visa whose stay period expired before Jan 24, 2018.
- Those whose passports expired before Jan 24, 2018 but have valid residency permits, and wish to leave the country.
- Newborns that are given residency permits sponsored by their family should refer to the residency affairs department to correct the newborn’s status during the amnesty period.
- Those reported to have absconded before Jan 24, 2018 regardless of the type of residency they have.
- Those who absconded after Jan 4, 2016, whether working in the private or domestic sectors.
Hajeri said item 2 of the law says that those wishing to remain in the country must pay fines without being referred for questioning, then settle their status if they meet the conditions. He added item 4 of the ministerial decision says expats in violation of residency law who have administrative or judicial obstacles that keep them from leaving must go to the residency affairs department to discuss the conditions of getting a residency permit according to the legal rules get during the grace period.
By Hanan Al-Saadoun