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Kuwait minister in a spot over ‘males only’ ad
March 27, 2014, 11:57 am

Kuwait’s justice minister has been given one week to pull out a newspaper advertisement to recruit only men for a position within the ministry if he wanted to avoid being questioned.

MP Safa Al Hashem said that she would grill Nayef Al Ajami for failing to comply with a strict government ban on discrimination on the basis of gender in recruiting employees.

The recruitment advertisement published this week in local media invited Kuwaitis to apply for the position of legal researcher within the ministry. However, it specified that only men could submit their applications.

“The minister has obviously disregarded the no-discrimination decision of the Civil Service endorsed by the government in 2005 when he approved the advertisement,” the lawmaker said. “It is an absolute violation of the Kuwaiti constitution and of the rights of Kuwaiti citizens. I had earlier warned him against it, so this time I will go for a grilling in parliament,” she added.

MP Abdul Kareem Al Kindari said that he was shocked by the advertisement.

“Does this mean that the ministry will publish, if need be, a separate advertisement for female applicants?” he asked. “Was there a decision by the justice ministry not to accept women to the position of legal researcher and subsequently public prosecutor?”

Kuwaiti women have been pushing for more rights within the justice ministry and the possibility to hold positions that were previously only open to men. However, conservative views have been resisting such attempts.

The minister is already under pressure from another lawmaker, Nabeel Al Fahdl, to exculpate himself from US charges of tolerating fundraising for terrorists in Syria.


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