In reaction to rumors targeting expatriates in the past few days with regard to alleged calls for the deportation of a large number of expatriates and the dismissal of female expatriate teachers who filed lawsuits to obtain their rights concerning housing allowances, concerned ministers have discarded the entire story as “mere rumor”.
Minister of Education and Higher Education Dr Mohammad Al-Fares affirmed that his ministry has no intention to end the services of the female expatriate teachers who received the final court verdict in their favor to receive difference of KD 90 housing allowance retroactively from April 2011 similar to KD 150 housing allowance their male counterparts received before Civil Service Commission’s decision to reduce housing allowance to KD 60.
In a statement, Al-Fares said the disbursement of the sum retroactively to deserving female expatriate teachers will be executed without breaching the court’s verdict. Asked about the mechanism of executing the verdict, Al-Fares stressed the verdict in retrospect depends on the next budget for fiscal year 2017/2018 to be approved in April by Ministry of Finance.
There are fears among the female expatriate teachers that filed cases against the ministry that their services will be terminated after disbursement of the difference of housing allowance, but the minister has quashed the report, saying they are “nothing more than mere rumors”.
For her part, Minister of Social Affairs, Labor and Economic Affairs, Hind Al-Sabeeh refuted the existence of any measure to deport a million expatriates or any other number in this case.
She mentioned that no study has been conducted on deporting expatriates, and that studies concerning restructuring of the population do not recommend or propose any such measures”. She explained that population restructuring study is concerned with variation of gender, academic qualification, social status, nature of the work of expatriates, and ratio of Kuwaitis to expatriates, indicating solutions will be based on these elements. She pointed out that the supreme council for population restructure made 12 recommendations to link expatriate residence with their academic qualification, increase charges whenever the required number of labor force increases, and set regulations for the number of domestic workers in families — apart from families with special needs cases.
She pointed to resolving the issue of absconding by granting grace period of three months for rectification of status and increasing the fine of absconding, toughening penalties against those employing absconders, activating fingerprint technology at the points of entry to determine those who are banned from entering or reentering the country in case they change their passports.
Recent statistics indicates more than 3 million expatriates are living in Kuwait, of which about 1.5 million work in government and private sectors respectively, in addition to 750,000 family residency holders, and 650,000 domestic workers.
SOURCE : ARABTIMES