MP Adasani threatens to grill minister again, cites violations

Panel to discuss fake bedoon passports

KUWAIT: MP Riyadh Al-Adasani said yesterday he has already prepared a second grilling for Information Minister Mohammad Al-Jabri who faces a no-confidence vote on Wednesday. The lawmaker warned that if racist or tribal means are used in the voting session, he will file the second grilling against the minister.

Jabri was grilled last week by Adasani, MPs Adel Al-Damkhi and Mohammad Al-Dallal over alleged violations and wrongdoings at the Information Ministry and the Agricultural Authority and Sports Authority which come under the minister. During the grilling, the three lawmakers presented to the Assembly what they said was proof for the allegations but the minister categorically denied the charges and insisted that he has carried out reforms.

In a separate statement, MP Dallal argued that the minister failed to refute the charges and that he did not even respond to most of the charges during the grilling debate that lasted several hours. Dallal said that under the minister, a large number of violations were committed in the Agricultural Authority especially in the distribution of state-owned land for agricultural purposes. He said that some of the land was distributed to relatives in a clear violation of the law while those who qualified for distribution were denied.

In the meantime, MP Al-Humaidi Al-Subaiei, who heads an investigation committee into fake passports bought by stateless people or bedoons, said the committee will discuss in its next meeting the issue of the passports with Interior Ministry officials.

Several years ago, hundreds of bedoons purchased passports from various African and Latin American countries as they reeled under Interior Ministry pressure to find a nationality when they were denied the right to Kuwaiti citizenship. Many of those passports later were found to be fake and holders were faced with even more problems. The issue was taken up by the National Assembly which decided to form a committee to investigate the issue.

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Economic Affairs Mariam Al-Aqeel yesterday said she was prepared to be grilled any time when asked about threats by MP Safa Al-Hashem that she wanted to grill the minister. Aqeel said that grilling is a constitutional right for lawmakers and she was prepared to face it.

By B Izzak