Kuwait PM faces new grilling


Islamist lawmaker Mohammad Hayef accuses Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser Mohammad Al Ahmad Al Sabah of being responsible for allowing the demolition of two mosques built illegally on state land.

Hayef had called on Sheikh Nasser to refer the head of the government agency responsible for demolitions to the public prosecution but he refused, even though he had ordered the agency to halt mosque demolitions.

Last week, Islamist MPs filed two requests to question Sheikh Nasser in parliament over allegations of mismanagement, breach of the constitution and failure to adopt a prudent economic policy, besides misuse of public funds.

The grillings fuelled speculations of an imminent decision by ruler of OPEC’s fourth largest producer to dissolve parliament, elected only last year, and call for fresh polls within two months.

Several MPs said last week that a decision to dissolve the 50-member house had been taken and it is now expected to be announced this week.

It is the first time any prime minister of the oil-rich emirate has faced three grillings at the same time. Sheikh Nasser, a nephew of the emir, has been under constant political pressure ever since became premier in February 2006. The most recent of his five cabinets was appointed in January. His four previous cabinets resigned after disputes with parliament, the latest in November when three Islamist MPs applied to question Sheikh Nasser over allegations of mismanagement and allowing a banned Iranian Shia cleric to enter Kuwait.

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