Cabinet members resign amid dispute with parliament

13th January 2021: Kuwait’s cabinet submits resignation in a standoff with the parliament.

Baaghi TV: Kuwait’s Prime Minister Sabah al-Khalid al-Sabah presented the resignation of his cabinet to the country’s ruler on Wednesday.

The premier presented his resignation days before he was due to be questioned in parliament over his choice of ministers and other issues.

The standoff between the government and parliament poses the first big challenge to Emir Sheikh Nawaf al-Ahmed al-Sabah, who gained power in September.

According to reports, it complicates government efforts to tackle the OPEC state’s deepest economic crisis in decades, caused by low oil prices and the coronavirus crisis.

In a move which the government said was related to developments in the relationship between the National Assembly (parliament) and the government, ministers had submitted their resignations on Tuesday to Sheikh Sabah.

It was not immediately clear if the emir, who has the final say in matters of state, would accept the cabinet’s resignation.

On Jan 5, in the first regular session of a new assembly, the motion to question Sheikh Sabah, who has been prime minister since late 2019, was submitted by three lawmakers, in which the opposition made gains in last year’s election.

As per reports from Reuters, more than 30 other MPs in the assembly, which has 50 elected seats, supported the request to question him. The motion referred to a cabinet that did not reflect the poll result and government interference in electing the speaker and members of parliamentary committees.

With the most open political system in the Gulf region, Kuwait’s Parliament has the power to pass legislation and question ministers, although senior government posts are occupied by members of Kuwait’s ruling family.

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