Kuwait: Foreign minister is facing a vote of no confidence over suspected violations￼
Kuwait–Following a lengthy questioning session, Kuwait’s foreign minister will face a vote of no confidence next week after ten MPs filed a motion alleging irregularities in his department. Sheikh Ahmad Nasser Al Mohammed, Kuwait’s Foreign Minister and Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs, was grilled by Kuwait’s Parliament on Tuesday on charges of misusing public funds, breaching laws, and failing to defend the country’s political and security interests.
Parliament Speaker Marzouq Al Ghanim said the body is not permitted to make a decision on the request until seven days after it is submitted, therefore the vote will be postponed until February 16 during a special session. A no-confidence vote requires the support of a majority of MPs to pass, however ministers who are unlikely to survive the vote frequently resign before the session begins.
Sheikh Ahmad responded to claims leveled by one MP earlier in Tuesday’s session, disputing the purported irregularities. He attempted to reassure the public and MPs that the ministry is concerned about their well-being and international interests. MP Shuaib Al Muwaizeri, who had submitted a motion to question the minister about concerns in his department, received a detailed response from Sheikh Ahmad.
According to a news story published by state news agency Kuna, “Sheikh Ahmad stated the Foreign Ministry had discovered a deficiency on the side of a contractor responsible for building a complex for the Kuwaiti diplomatic post in Brunei and liquidated his banking guarantee.” Sheikh Ahmad stated that the complicated construction issue began in 2016, despite the fact that he had only entered office in 2019.
The minister was also questioned about Kuwaiti citizen Mohammad Al Baghli’s strange disappearance in Romania. In March, he added, a security delegation will fly to the European country to investigate the situation. Sheikh Ahmad pressed Mr Al Muwaizeri to clarify which accords had been breached, particularly in terms of schedules and legal views, in response to claims that he had broken international treaties and conventions 2,616 times since 1961.
Sheikh Ahmad will be the second minister in Kuwait’s current cabinet to face a vote of no confidence, following Defense Minister Sheikh Hamad Jaber Al Ali Al Sabah’s survival of a move against him last month over a series of policies, including one to enable women to serve in combat positions. Both times, Mr. Al Muwaizeri led a charge of ten MPs against both ministries. Kuwait’s Parliament has legislative power in comparison to other Gulf countries, and parliamentarians have been known to oppose the administration and royals.
Kuwait has been shattered by disagreements between elected lawmakers and successive administrations headed by the ruling Al Sabah family for more than a decade, with Parliaments and Cabinets dissolving on many occasions. After a standoff with Parliament over reforms, the previous cabinet resigned in November, and the fourth Cabinet in two years was established in December. The opposition and its allies gained over half of the 50 seats in the December 2020 elections.