‘No signs of dissolution’ of Kuwait National Assembly

MP Tabtabai files to grill Public Works Minister

KUWAIT: His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah received the National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanem and a group of lawmakers yesterday. —KUNA

KUWAIT: National Assembly Speaker Marzouk Al-Ghanem yesterday downplayed speculations that the Assembly could be dissolved, especially with more grilling – saying that there were no indications for the Assembly dissolution. Ghanem said reports about an imminent plan to dissolve the Assembly are mere baseless rumors and something we have become accustomed with ahead of the start of the new Assembly terms.
Speaking after he and a group of lawmakers met with the Amir HH Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, the Speaker said that the source of the rumors is almost one and is known, adding “there is no dissolution”. He said the Amir has cautioned us against regional dangers and the need to be united in the face of regional challenges.

The Speaker also confirmed that the row between Kuwait and Saudi Arabia over oil production from the neutral zone shared equally between the two countries. He said the issue has been resolved through cooperation between the leaderships of the two countries. Production at Al-Khafji and Wafra oilfields was halted about four years ago over a dispute between the two countries over environmental and administrative issues. Before stoppage, the area was pumping over 500,000 barrels per day, equally shared by the two countries.

MP Omar Al-Tabtabaei

Ghanem also said that he received yesterday a grilling from MP Omar Al-Tabtabai against Minister of Public Works and Housing Jenan Bushehri over alleged violations in some projects besides failure to repair roads affected by last year’s rains. MP Tabtabai said before filing the grilling, he sent some 23 questions to the minister over a variety of issues, adding that he received replies for some – whereas others were not answered and received false answers for the rest.

He charged that there were violations in the appointments and delay in some housing projects like Mutlaa and South Saad Al-Abdallah. He said the grilling is based on five main issues: Failure to implement the law, squandering of public funds, causing harm to a public utility which is the new airport project, obstructing development projects and misuse of power and mismanagement of the roads issue. The lawmaker said that his grilling has been ready from August. Two MPs had already threatened to grill the minister over similar issues.

In another development, five lawmakers yesterday submitted a draft law calling for amending the electoral law to increase the number of votes in Assembly election to two instead of one in existing law. The amendment keeps the five electoral districts and with each district electing 10 MPs each. Under the existing law, voters can pick up only one candidate and the amendment is calling to increase it to two candidates.

By B Izzak