Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Sabah led the ministerial walkout from Kuwait's parliament
Kuwaiti ministers walk out of a parliament session in Kuwait City on Monday over a plan by opposition MPs to quiz the finance minister on alleged financial and administrative irregularities. © Yasser al-Zayyat - AFP
Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Sabah led the ministerial walkout from Kuwait's parliament
AFP
Last updated: May 22, 2012

Kuwait ministers walk out of parliament over quiz

The Kuwaiti cabinet walked out of parliamentary session Tuesday over a plan by opposition MPs to quiz the finance minister on alleged financial and administrative irregularities.

The move came as the opposition-dominated parliament was about to vote on a proposal to merge two grillings, a step strongly rejected by the government on legal basis.

Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Sabah, a senior member of the ruling family, led the walkout after he described the opposition plan as an attempt to impose their unconstitutional decisions.

The two quiz requests were separately filed earlier in May by four Kuwaiti opposition MPs to question Finance Minister Mustafa al-Shamali over allegations of a host of irregularities.

Later, the opposition decided to merge the two grillings but the government insisted in debating them separately, citing provisions in the constitution.

The two quizes charge the minister of being responsible for wide-ranging violations in the ministry and several departments under him, including the oil-rich emirate's sovereign wealth fund.

Several pro-government MPs hailed the government walkout and called for dissolving the parliament and holding snap polls, hardly three months after the previous elections in February.

But Information Minister Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah Al-Sabah categorically denied that the government plans to recommend to the oil-rich emirate ruler to dissolve the house.

Kuwait, OPEC's third largest producer, has been rocked since 2006 by a series of political crises that led to the resignation of the cabinet about eight times and dissolving of the parliament on four occasions.

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