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MPs act to stiffen penalties on visa trade
February 4, 2015, 9:00 am
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MP Nabil Al-Fadel has proposed amendments to Penal Code number 16/1960 in order to impose harsher penalties on visa traders and those who hire workers or housemaids who are not under their sponsorship. According to Arab Times report, In his proposal Al-Fadel added the following articles to the Penal Code:

â–  Article 185 (repeated) states that anyone who collects money from another person in exchange for the issuance of a new work permit or renewal of the same shall be imprisoned for not less than three years and not exceeding five years, fined not less than KD 10,000 and not exceeding KD 20,000 or any one of these penalties. In case of repeating the act, the court shall rule on punishing the offender more than the maximum penalty set by the law provided it is not twice the limit.

â–  Article 185 (repeated a) states any employer who hires a worker registered under another sponsor, unless this employment is based on a contract in accordance with the purposes of the license of any employer referred to, shall be imprisoned for not less than two years and not more than three years, fined not less than KD 10,000 and not exceeding KD20,000 or any one of these punishments. The same penalty shall be imposed on any employer whose registered employees remain idle or do not actually work for him for three months.

In all cases, the same penalties will be imposed on the concerned workers and the court shall rule on their deportation after serving the sentence. In case of repeating the act, the court shall rule on punishing the offender more than the maximum penalty set by the law provided it is not twice the limit.

â–  Article 185 (repeated b) stipulates punishment of not less than one year and not more than two years, fine of not less than KD 10,000 and not exceeding KD 20,000 or any one of these penalties on anyone who hires a domestic worker under his sponsorship without giving work to the latter for a month or more as per the contract signed by both parties. In all cases, the same penalties will be imposed on the domestic workers to be followed by deportation after serving the sentence.

In case of repeating the act, the court shall rule on punishing the offender more than the maximum penalty set by the law provided it is not twice the limit.

The premier and ministers shall implement this law starting from the date of publication in the official gazette. Meanwhile, the Priorities Committee on Tuesday finalized the agenda of the Parliament for the upcoming session in the presence of Oil Minister Dr Ali Al-Omair, State Minister for Planning and Development Affairs Hind Al-Sabeeh and State Minister for Cabinet Affairs Sheikh Mohammed Al-Abdullah who affirmed the concerned panels are keen on completing their reports on various issues to be forwarded to the legislature for discussion. He hopes the executive and legislative authorities continue working together harmoniously to achieve their goals. Items in the agenda of the next session include the second reading of the Family Court Bill, establishment of a livestock company, decree to postpone of Municipality elections and five-year development plan of the State.

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