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21-07-2011 - Kuwait Times

Minister questioned over staff's dodgy expenses

In a press release issued yesterday, the parliamentarian asserted that Kuwait "is an institutional state where the constitution organizes all rights and duties, including those of the main powers," urging the government to transparently explain the details of its expenditure over the past 10 years to the Kuwaiti people.

 

Lawmaker Ali Al-Deqbasi, meanwhile, submitted a number of parliamentary questions to Minister of Commerce and Industry Dr. Amani Buresli about allegations of false expenses claims by ministry personnel, including inflated claims for the use of ministerial vehicles. Referring in particular to staff at the rank of assistant undersecretary, the MP asked Dr. Buresli whether the ministry officials' expenses claims complied with ministry regulations.

 

He also enquired as to the truth of reports that the minister had refused to sign a directive ordering the dismissal of an employee with a long record of absenteeism, further asking her about the ministry's recruitment of external consultants, and these consultants' CVs, qualifications and salaries, and requesting details on staff development and training courses and conferences.

 

On a separate issue, MP Askar Al-Enezi yesterday proposed that retired warrant officers and privates from the Kuwaiti Army, Ministry of Interior, National Guard and Kuwait Fire Services Directorate should be eligible for enhanced pensions like their more highly decorated peers.

 

Suggesting monthly military pensions of KD300 for all those in these groups who had served over 25 years and KD250 for veterans with 20 or more years' experience, Al-Enezi, in his capacity as a member of the parliamentary and defense committee, said that people in these groups deserve an increased pension every bit as much as their senior officers.

 

All previous legislation on this issue has focused on officers and senior leaders, forgetting about all those devoted military personnel who played a great role in defending the country," he asserted, adding that the individuals in these groups are suffering from soaring living expenses just as much as everybody else.

 

On another matter, fellow lawmaker Walid Al-Tabtabaie has proposed the establishment of an integrated body under the supervision of the premier's office to handle any crisis situations that might arise.

 

Suggesting that such a body should be staffed by highly qualified experts with suitably distinguished economic, social and political backgrounds, he said that the organization could be helpful in predicting crises in various fields long before they occur in order to take steps to avert them or mitigate their effects.

Other sources on GCC civil society and human rights