Young people must become aware of challenges: Marafie
Candidate focuses on youth, healthcare, national unity
Dr Kazem Marafie, a practicing surgeon since 1977, is running in the National Assembly elections for the first time with the aim to make the youth aware of future challenges. “Young people asked me to run in the elections to place their issues in the parliament. They encouraged me and are volunteering to work for my campaign. I’m running in these elections to deliver a message, whether I win or not,” he told Kuwait Times.
“The youth are the pillars that we depend on. I want to make sure that the next generation has a bright future. They have skills, abilities and ambitions, but they don’t have the finances to run in the election, as it is a very expensive affair. This was the reason behind setting up my electoral headquarters in second constituency although I am running from the first, to allow youth from different areas to gather. This will prepare them to be ready to enter the parliament. I will be holding weekly symposiums during my election campaign,” Marafie said. He hopes the future will be bright for the youth. “If the youth unite, they will represent a great power and will eliminate corruption and bribery. We want to fight ‘wasta’ so all people can be equal.”
“We need expats in our society, as they have the experience in various positions and fields. But if we have a Kuwaiti with the same skills, then we should employ him. There are further issues related to expats that I will discuss in the parliament,” stressed Marafie.
“As this is my specialization, I understand best how to resolve most problems in this sector. The idea of former health minister Dr Hilal Al-Sayer of bringing in specialist doctors from abroad to Kuwait instead of sending patients abroad was a great idea. Kuwait has the ability and budget to do so. I intend to propose this idea again,” he pointed out. “To decrease the cases of medical tourists traveling abroad as patients and getting medical treatment with public funds, we can send a patient to a suitable place for the treatment he needs, such as the Czech Republic for physiotherapy instead of Britain. There are many cases of corruption, of doctors writing exaggerated reports about the health condition of the patient to extend his stay abroad for four months, although he only needs to stay for two weeks,” said Marafie. According to him, most healthcare offices abroad are suspect. “I have faced many such cases of patients asking me to extend the period of their treatment, but I have never agreed, as it’s wrong,” Marafie added.
“Medical treatment is very expensive. But we can send patients to universities abroad, which is free of charge. They only need donations for some departments in the hospital such as for leukemia, cancer and others. I applied this in the past a few times, but the ministry here does not accept this solution as they need bills for the patient’s treatment. My proposal can save thousands of dinars, as we can treat around 400 patients for the cost of just two patients, as the donation amount is only around £50,000, which equals the cost of two patients,” he noted.
“My slogan is 1+1=1, which symbolizes unity, that I and the people of Kuwait are united with our rulers - the Al-Sabah family. We love our country and we should all sacrifice for the benefit of our country. There are many fanatics running in these elections financed by other countries to realize their agendas. So we should be careful and mindful of such candidates,” Marafie concluded.
KUWAIT: First constituency candidate Dr Kazem Marafie speaks to Kuwait Times. —Photo by Yasser Al-Zayyat