KUWAIT: The Ministry of Interior is expected to announce a three-month grace period for illegal residents either to leave the country without paying fines or legalize their status, reports Al- Seyassah daily quoting reliable sources. In the same context the sources said the Ministry of Interior is taking stock of residence law violators in all governorates.
The sources stressed the Assistant Undersecretary for Citizenship and Passports Affairs Major-General Sheikh Faisal Al- Nawaf has given instructions for directors of immigration officer to limit the number of offenders and a report on the number of violators is expected to be submitted to the Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Sheikh Mohammad Al-Khalid.
The sources added the expected amnesty is closely linked to the number of violators and may be announced in conjunction with the national days holidays.
Meanwhile, Al-Anba daily quoted security sources said there are more than 120,000 violators of residence law who will be allowed to leave the country. The daily added, the amnesty is expected to be declared during the first half of this year.
The daily also quoted Assistant Undersecretary for Passports and Nationality Affairs Sheikh Faisal Al- Nawaf has started receiving expatriates who have problems with their residence status.
Sheikh Nawaf will issue instructions to General Immigration Departments in the six governorates to allow transfer or residence after making sure they pay fine not exceeding KD 600.
KUWAIT: As grace-period the Minister of Oil, State Minister of Parliamentary Affairs Dr Ali Al-Omair gave for the oil sector syndicates to call off or suspend their intended strike ended Saturday, knowledgeable sources affirmed that government will not allow any action that may cause the economy to incur nearly $350 million losses each day to the detriment of the nation.
Sources disclosed government’s intention to resort to Article No. 14 of Law 1/1993 related to protecting public funds which stipulates that each public employee or laborer who commits a mistake that leads to huge financial losses or affects the interests of the authority where he works will be sentenced to no less than three years imprisonment or fined a minimum of KD 3,000 to KD 20, 000 or one of the two penalties.
The same article indicates short-term imprisonment with a minimum 3 years and fine not below KD 20,000 and KD 100,000 if the mistake is grave and harms the State’s finances or commercial or economic status or even national interests. The same penalty will be imposed if the mistake is committed during war. In such cases, the court will fire the employee if proven guilty of the offense. The sources explained that government will resort to laws related to the protection of public funds, noting the laws enable government to take necessary measures to protect property and the sources of national income.
They warned on engaging the vital oil sector in the circle of rumors through statements that aim to increase pressure on the governmental institutions to gain advantages which are unavailable to their counterparts in other governmental sectors. In the same context, Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) and Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) have exerted tremendous efforts to outlaw the intended strike by issuing direct and clear warnings to those who have adopted the idea, indicating the sectors have since coordinated with the administration of Kuwait Petroleum Corporation and its subsidiaries to avoid any harm from coming around the sector.
It is worth mentioning that several lawmakers last week criticized the Chairman of Petroleum and Petrochemical Workers Union Abdulaziz Al-Sharthan for supporting the proposed strike. Sources warned any person threatening the homeland with a strike to paralyze the only source of provisions does not have good intention. Minister Al-Omair had announced last Wednesday that emergency plan is ready in case the syndicates do not suspend or cancel the strike at the beginning of the week.
KUWAIT: A number of politicians, economic experts and owners of real estate demanded lawmakers to study their statements before issuing them. They indicated that the proposal to allot five-year residency to expatriates in Kuwait will negatively affect many owners of the real estates that are rented to expatriates.
They added that it will also affect financial companies and banks that have transactions with the expatriates. Chairman of Kuwait Construction Companies Union Dr Salah Bouresli said the proposals to repatriate 1,350,000 expatriates in five years and limit the residency of expatriate laborers to 5 years is aimed to just show off through media because such a proposal is not practical especially since Kuwait is currently witnessing a constructional boom.
He indicated that any move to implement the proposal of repatriating expatriate personnel will first harm the construction companies that depend heavily on expatriate laborers, adding that the daily wages of a laborer will become KD 50 per day if the proposal is carried out.
He revealed that minimum of 500,000 real estates are owned by Kuwaitis, asking, “What will happen if the expatriate laborers are repatriated from the country? How will the citizens pay back the loans that they borrowed from banks to build these real estates?” Dr Bouresli said the companies depend on many expatriate experts, technicians and engineers, wondering how it is possible to threaten the industry by launching such unstudied statements.
He stressed, “If a lawmaker wants to become distinguished, he has to first conduct necessary and precise studies to provide logical alternatives before launching such statements”. He also wondered how Kuwait can allow giving up personnel who gained experience from their work in Kuwait and let them to go to another country to implement that experience.
Meanwhile, Financial Analyst Ameer Al-Mansour said the step of deporting such large number of expatriates within five years clearly indicates that the individual who suggested it does not comprehend the extent of negative impact such a step will have on the Kuwaiti economy and nation.
He demanded the lawmakers to study issues thoroughly while tackling them because citizens do not give their votes to a lawmaker who did not consider all aspects of an issue that the latter tackled. He also demanded them to talk about matters in which they have experience, while a lawmaker who does not know how the wheel of economy is run must seek the assistance of economic experts in order to issue sensible statements.
In addition, a representative of a real estate company Abdulaziz Al- Shaddad said, “We do not know why such statements are launched without being studied. Many companies bring efficient legal experts, accountants and consultants into the country, so how is it possible to tell them that they can stay only for five years?” He affirmed that the best solution to control the phenomenon of the marginal personnel is to apply the law strictly and control the visa traders.
KUWAIT: The Government Manpower and Restructuring Program (GMRP) has rejected the proposal to limit the number of years that expatriates can work in the country to five years, indicating that there are several sectors that cannot manage without expatriate workforce despite the Kuwaitization policies in the country.
In a press statement, the Secretary General of GMRP Fawzi Al-Majdali said, “The proposal to limit the number of years for expatriates to work in Kuwait to five years is a hasty and unrealistic proposal that requires more rational deliberation”. Al-Majdali stressed that such proposals cannot be generalized, as they do not serve the ultimate objectives that every sector is striving to achieve based on the vision of HH the Amir of Kuwait to transform the country into a commercial and financial hub in the region.
Al-Majdali stressed that GMRP, in its capacity of collecting data of citizens working in both government and private sectors, strives to support the national labor. However, he insisted that its activities are based on a rational perspective and in accordance with the necessity and stability of the labor market.
He added, “The current situation of Kuwait is such that it cannot manage without foreign workforce or limit the period of their employment in the Kuwaiti labor market. He said, “The current problem in the labor market structure is that the national manpower prefers to work in the government sector and not the private sector”, adding, “The stability of the labor market can be achieved by getting rid of marginalized workforce and visa traders”.
Al-Majdali indicated that the Kuwaitization policy cannot be implemented 100 percent in the government or private sector, as there are some professions and work both sectors cannot eliminate and for which sufficient national manpower is unavailable.
KUWAIT: The Neurology Department in Ibn Sina Hospital organized a press conference recently to announce the use of surgery in treating epilepsy for the first time in Kuwait. The operation will be conducted by a specialized medical team consisting of the head of the department Dr Jassel Al-Hashel, Epilepsy Unit Head Dr Maher Arrabi, Neurology Consultant Dr Feisal Al-Sayer and American University in Beirut Professor Ahmad Beidhuun.
According to Al-Hashel, the Third Neurology Conference will be inaugurated next week in conjunction with the American University in Beirut. He also announced the inauguration of the surgical removal of epilepsy cavity in patients who have been suffering from epilepsy for a long time and do not respond to medications.
He explained the surgery will be conducted after trying other treatments and all necessary tests to determine if the epileptic cavity needs to be removed. Al-Hashel affirmed that, ‘’Kuwait is the first country in the GCC to perform surgery to treat epilepsy. Some countries send their patients abroad due to the absence of such procedure in their health facilities. In the Gulf region, Kuwait is advanced in multiple sclerosis treatment.
In fact, it could be the most advanced country in the Middle East in this field, not to mention its efforts to implant batteries for patients with Parkinson’s disease; therefore, he expects brighter future for Kuwait in this field. On the other hand, Al-Sayer pointed out the new technology on the surgical treatment of epilepsy will be used on seven patients. He also praised the major development that the Neurology Department experienced under the leadership of Al-Hashel, along with his many contributions to the treatment of epilepsy.
KUWAIT: Director of Jahra Hospital Dr Shehab Al-Mahandi said Director of Jahra Health District Dr Abdul Aziz Al- Farhood has given instructions to continue the process of allotting the morning shift for citizens and GCC nationals, while the evening shift is for expatriates. It has been reported that this step was taken after the successful trial implementation of the decision in a bid to reduce the crowd.
Sources confirmed the decision is now applied to other health districts and the evening shift is also expected to be allotted for Bedouns besides the expatriates. Sources added the suggestion was submitted to the Ministers Council after studying all aspects of the issue, especially since some people regard the move as a form of discrimination. Sources explained the main objective is to organize the administrative works and to ensure the best medical services are provided to everyone.
Minister of Health Dr Ali Al-Obaidi held a meeting with the directors of health zones and hospitals in the presence of Undersecretary Dr Khalid Al-Sahlawi and the Director of Information Systems to identify a new mechanism for applying Bed Department scheme in the hospitals, reports Al-Seyassah daily. In a statement after the meeting, Al- Obaidi announced that follow-up teams will be dispatched to hospitals to ease procedures for patients inside the wards and follow up the quality of service delivery, including clinical examination and other services.
He said the teams will follow-up the treatment plans physicians adopt for each patient. For example, the team will ease procedures to serve patients who urgently need X-ray. Also, the meeting underlined other issues such as shifting employees in various sectors of the ministry. On the other hand, Director of School Health Department at Ministry of Health Dr Eftiqar Al-Adwani confirmed over 90 percent of the schools have nurses, indicating the clinics were supplied with medical staff based on tenders the Ministry of Education presented to some private companies, under the supervision of Ministry of Health.
KUWAIT: A ceremony was held at the Embassy today to observe the Kashmir Solidarity Day. Large number of people from Pakistani community in Kuwait and officials from the Embassy attended the event.
The ceremony started with recitation from the Holy Quran. Messages of the President and the Prime Minister were read out to the participants. Both the president and the prime minister underscored the need for resolution of the Kashmir dispute according to the UN Resolutions. A just and peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with the aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir is a sine qua non for lasting peace in South Asia, the messages read. They also reaffirmed Pakistan’s continued moral, political and diplomatic support to the people of Kashmir.
A documentary film, highlighting the history of Kashmir’s struggle for their right to self-determination was also shown. The documentary drew immense interest from the audience.
The ceremony ended with collective prayers for the success of Kashmir struggle and progress of Pakistan.