De­ci­sions con­sti­tu­tion­ally sus­pi­cious

Other Voices

Arab Times - - LOCAL -

CBy Ah­mad Al-Sar­raf

om­ment­ing on what was pub­lished by the Al-Qabas e-news­pa­per, on pay­ing some MPs ‘sec­ond ex­cep­tional salary’, the Sec­re­tary­Gen­eral of the Na­tional Assem­bly said what is pub­lished by the AlQabas daily is not new and it is not the first time that the gov­ern­ment agrees to pay ‘sec­ond ex­cep­tional salary’ for some MPs in ac­cor­dance with Ar­ti­cle 80 of the So­cial Se­cu­rity Law.

The Sec­re­tary-Gen­eral said this salary was in­tro­duced dur­ing the pre­vi­ous leg­isla­tive terms and since 1992 the Assem­bly Coun­cil has been pay­ing this salary at the be­gin­ning of each leg­isla­tive term to mem­bers who have not re­ceived pen­sion be­fore they be­came MPs or who have re­ceived a lim­ited salary less than that of their col­leagues.

He added, this pay­ment is aimed at strik­ing a bal­ance from the fi­nan­cial point of view to treat all MPs fair and square be­cause some MPs be­fore they were elected to Par­lia­ment were en­ti­tled for pen­sions, and so are en­ti­tled to re­ceive the par­lia­men­tary salary pur­suant to the pro­vi­sions of Law No 4 of 1963 amend­ing the re­mu­ner­a­tion of MPs which al­low them to re­ceive the par­lia­men­tary salary and the pen­sion.

Al-Kan­dari — the sec­re­tary-gen­eral for­got to men­tion that those who re­ceived gifts from the gov­ern­ment did not de­mand it be­fore as stated by MP Rakan Al-Nisf, so why the money be given to those who did not re­quest it at all?

Is it a con­sti­tu­tional sus­pi­cion, when an ex­ec­u­tive author­ity ap­proves the grant­ing of funds to the party, which mon­i­tors its work and ac­count­ing it, and even de­mand for no­con­fi­dence vote over it?

What about those MPs who have re­jected such gifts such as the for­mer and cur­rent MP Ab­dul­lah AlRoumi, who have been sec­onded in re­ject­ing these ad­di­tional salaries by for­mer MPs such as Ab­dul­wa­hab Al-Haroun, Walid Al-Jari and oth­ers? Let us not for­get the dis­tin­guished po­si­tion of for­mer MP Mishari Al-Osaimi on this sub­ject.

The mere state­ment by the Sec­re­tary-Gen­eral that the Gov­ern­ment has agreed to pay these ex­cep­tional salaries to a num­ber of MPs is an ir­refutable proof of this sus­pi­cious

Al-Sar­raf

be­hav­ior and should there­fore be re­con­sid­ered. It is not an ex­cuse that this pro­ce­dure has been in place since 1992.

Our demo­cratic prac­tices must rise to the prac­tices of the de­vel­oped coun­tries. It is not pos­si­ble to go back af­ter more than half a cen­tury of demo­cratic ex­pe­ri­ence, go back to the pre-demo­cratic prac­tices, and to the gov­ern­ment’s at­tempt to win the loy­alty of the MPs with all this crude pub­lic­ity.

This may be jus­ti­fied by the de­sire of ‘some MPs’ to re­ceive an ad­di­tional salary in or­der to achieve the prin­ci­ple of jus­tice be­tween them and other mem­bers, who be­fore their elec­tion were re­ceiv­ing pen­sions and are en­ti­tled to com­bine them with the par­lia­men­tary salary, but what makes this be­hav­ior sus­pi­cious is that it has been de­cided by the gov­ern­ment as a gift.

If there was no sus­pi­cion at this point, why did a num­ber of re­spected MPs who have dis­tin­guished par­lia­men­tary his­tory re­ject such sums in the past?

If their be­hav­ior to re­ject the money is flawed, why did their col­leagues who re­ceived money re­mained silent.

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They checked his de­tails to dis­cover he is a Kuwaiti ci­ti­zen who is wanted in a case filed by a car rental of­fice af­ter he took a ve­hi­cle on rent but nei­ther paid the rent for two months nor re­turn the car. He was also ac­cused of swin­dling a Kuwaiti woman of KD 17 and dis­ap­pear­ing.

The sus­pect was ar­rested and re­ferred to the con­cerned au­thor­i­ties for nec­es­sary le­gal ac­tion.

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