Kuwaiti MPs call on oil minister to quit


“You have to submit your resignation today because what you said has humiliated the Kuwaiti people,” liberal MP Abdullah al-Roumi said during a special session called by MPs to debate corruption cases.

Sheikh Ali was quoted by Al Qabas newspaper as saying on Saturday that he considers former oil minister Sheikh Ali Khalifa al-Sabah, a defendant in a major graft case, as “my master and that I consult him occasionally on oil issues.”

Sheikh Ali Al Khalifa is one of five former top officials of the state-owned Kuwait Oil Tanker Co (KOTC) accused of stealing more than 100 million dollars.

Outspoken opposition MP Mussallam Al Barrak charged that millions of dollars were transferred about 15 years ago into bank accounts held by Sheikh Ali Al Khalifa from former KOTC chairman Abdulfattah al-Bader who has fled Kuwait.

The former oil minister has categorically denied any wrongdoing and has never been convicted although the other four accused were convicted of stealing public funds.

Barrak called on the oil minister to withdraw his statements and apologise in public.

Another opposition lawmaker, Adel Al Saraawi, urged the prime minister to take action against the minister.

MPs also criticised the oil minister for announcing plans to revamp the oil sector by removing top officials and promoting young staff.

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