The parliamentary Financial and Economic Affairs Committee on Sunday discussed a bill prohibiting charging interest on loans obtained from the Public Authority for Social Security (PASS). Committee Rapporteur MP Safa Al- Hashim said the authority continues to charge interest on loans although its purpose is to ensure social solidarity and stability for retirees.
She argued PASS is not an investment bank, accusing the authority of engaging in ambiguous and questionable ‘business’ with retirees considering a retiree who receives a loan amounting to KD 19,000 is required to pay KD 31,000. She stressed there is no justification for PASS to charge exorbitant interest on loans, especially since there has been a legal advisory forbidding it from charging interest. She added that when they reviewed the authority’s regulations, they did not find any stipulation on charging interest. She disclosed the committee has asked PASS officials to present the second technical report showing re-computation of loan payments.
Furthermore, the Legislative and Legal Affairs Committee discussed several bills on Sunday. Committee Chairman MP Mohammed Al-Dallal said the committee approved the following proposals:
■ Disconnection of water or electricity lines in private houses should not be done unless a court verdict in this regard is issued.
■ Amend the Citizenship Law in order to allow Kuwaiti women to pass on their citizenship to their children, just like their male counterparts.
Al-Dallal added the committee approved the request of the Public Prosecution to lift the immunity of MP Ahmed Al-Fadel after hearing the latter’s opinion on the request. However, the committee postponed talks on the request to lift the immunity of MPs Waleed Al-Tabtabaei and Jaman Al-Harbash in relation to the Parliament building storming case. Al-Dallal also unveiled the committee’s plan to hold two meetings to discuss draft laws on the Electoral Commission, handicapped affairs, pre-trial detention and appointment of public officials.
For the 10th day consecutive day since the termination of the health insurance contract with Public Services Company, the crisis continues with the queue in insurance centers getting longer and the situation has turned from worse to worst, reports Al-Seyassah daily.
The company is allegedly taking advantage of the situation to put pressure on the Ministry of Health to regret its decision to terminate the contract but informed health sector sources stressed that Minister of Health Dr Jamal Al-Harbi will not regret his decision.
Sources presented some suggestions to address the problem such as temporary de-linking of health assurance from residency-related procedures until the problem is resolved, issuing stamps for the corresponding medical insurance fee and distribution of these stamps in designated areas.
On the legal aspect of the issue, sources pointed out the ministry has the right to sue the concerned company for committing violations. People who were in line at Al-Jabriya Health Insurance Center talked about their dilemma as they have been visiting the center in the morning and afternoon daily for one week now but their transactions have yet to be completed.
Others accused the employees of closing the doors during regular hours and opening doors after these hours. One of the visitors revealed his residency permit has expired and it has not been renewed although he is at the center every day. It has been reported that the worsening situation in the center resulted in wrangles between visitors and employees, up to the point of calling police to handle the situation
SOURCE : ARABTIMES