Government's Proposal For Ramadan Holiday Rejected By Experts

27 March 2023 Ramadan

In a unanimous statement by a number of political, economic, and education experts, the government's tendency to consider Ramadan's last ten days an official holiday will further paralyze Kuwait, perpetuating the attitude that work is beneath value, as well as damaging students' performance severely, according to Aljarida daily, who primarily suffer from educational losses since the COVID-19 pandemic began. In individual press statements, these experts called on the government to move away from this approach due to its many negative effects on various aspects of society, especially economic and educational. They stressed that this move will constitute a “disaster” if the government adopts it, and the price to pay will be hefty. Chairman of the Board of Directors of AlShall Consulting Company Jassem Al-Sadoun affirmed that the mere suggestion of this trend is a disaster by all standards, as it develops a sense of dishonor towards the value of work.

He described this trend as systematic sabotage at a high cost in light of the low productivity of public sector employees. It gives everyone a feeling that work is not important, will lead to greater backwardness, and appears as encouragement from the government not to work at a time when it buys employee vacations. He said, “This is definitely a disaster by all standards, and a door to more waste of money and decline of work values in an entire country.”

Dr. Abdullah Al-Salem University's founding council president Moudi Al-Hamoud also emphasized that this proposal would result in a substantial increase in educational losses in Kuwait, especially since Kuwait has the shortest academic year in the world, which in turn would negatively affect students' academic performance.

According to Al-Hamoud, this proposal does not make sense since we have been accustomed to continuing studies throughout the holy month for many years. This matter will definitely not affect the performance of worship and studying at the same time. In the meantime, the Kuwait International College of Law's head, Dr. Muhammad Al-Maqaatei, stressed that the disruption would affect the educational process and the academic achievement of students, but that he did not see a need to stop studying during this time. Kuwait suffers from educational loss, and stopping studies during the last ten days of Ramadan will exacerbate it. Mustafa Al-Shammali, the former Minister of Finance, indicated that this trend would not only harm the economy, but also harm the country as a whole.

Bader Al-Humaidhi, former Minister of Finance, said Kuwait has an extremely low level of employee productivity, adding, “We don’t need to add insult to injury, disrupt the country, and paralyze everyone’s interests.” He affirmed that reducing the working hours would suffice. Al-Humaidhi stressed that the government should not agree to the tendency to close the state for about 17 days due to the high cost and inacceptability of that step.

He stated, “Unfortunately, we have a group of MPs that are primarily concerned with playing on emotions and tickling people’s feelings with such proposals.” Also, Abdul-Majeed Al-Shatti, the former president of the Kuwait Banking Association, claimed that such a holiday would be a disaster and disrupt the state in all ways. He said, “We are among the top countries in the region that obtain official holidays during the year”. The former Minister of Planning Ali Al-Mousa affirmed that such a move will mean “more waste of public money.” As for the former managing director of the Kuwait Authority for Investment Ali Al-Bader, he said the private sector is the basis for the state, but other than that, it is not of the utmost importance, stressing that this sector will inevitably continue to work because it increases its value. Also, a member of the Board of Directors of the Kuwait Chamber of Commerce and Industry Khaled Al-Khaled said closing the country in this way is not justified.

He affirmed that such decisions need studies and figures in order to determine their negative effects on the economy and people’s interests. Al-Khaled added, “There is no justification for such a long vacation, especially since we have a lot of vacations throughout the year.” The Head of the Union of Investment Companies, Saleh Al-Salami, said the implementation of this approach will further paralyze the country, which is currently in a paralyzed state because there has been no government for a while. He highlighted that the most important in this equation is the private sector, as it honors the value of work and productivity, adding that this vacation, if it takes place, may be in its interest, as its units will benefit from the exchange that will result from it. According to Al-Salami, these concepts need to be changed. We need more development. We have many challenges ahead. Considering the patterns of the work environment that have become normal in nearby countries that outperform us by dozens of times, this approach does not serve the desired development. We need months to complete our transactions."


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