Who Dares to Raise Questions in Bahrain on Gov’t Electricity and Petroleum Arrears?
2019-03-14 - 3:48 p
Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): Contradictory news is being released by the Ministry of Electricity in Bahrain, which cuts off electricity in poverty-stricken areas, depriving those citizens, who cannot provide their basic needs, of electricity while turning a blind eye to the collection of arrears of hotels, ministries and wealthy members of the ruling family.
While stories about the power cuts that poor families are being subjected to due to delays in bill payments that only amount to dozens of dinars, the Minister of Electricity Abdulhussein Mirza came out to say that the arrears of ministries amounted to over 2 million dinars, in response to a parliamentary question.
This number, although very large compared to the bills of less fortunate citizens, is definitely not correct. The real numbers are much higher than that. The Minister only talked about what he termed as "non-sovereign ministries", however, the bills of sovereign ministries and bodies are deemed confidential.
Can MP Isa Al-Kooheji, who asked the Minister about these ministries' arrears, ask him another question about the arrears of what he called the sovereign ministries and bodies? Can he ask him a question about the arrears of the royal court and the Prime Minister's royal court?
Let's say Al-Kooheji dared to ask such a question, would Minister Mirza be able to reveal to the public that the electricity arrears of the two royal courts amount to more than 10 million BD? Can the Minister disclose the arrears of the Supreme Council for Women?
No one wants to speak ill of these two men, so it's probably better to discuss the arrears of some hotels. Why don't they discuss the arrears of the Regency hotel, the Ritz-Carlton hotel or some of the large villas located in the Durrat Al-Bahrain project?
In fact, the arrears of one hotel, such as Regency, amount to more than the arrears of entire residential complexes, yet no one dares to discuss this issue. That's because it is owned by the Prime Minister. That's also the case of the due payments of the King and Crown Prince's investments.
No one dares to ask why these people invest and live at the expense of the state while the Ministry of Electricity transfers the due bills of the deceased to their widows and sons, or why their huge palaces are lit up, while the sons of a worker who only earns 250 dinars a month drowns in the darkness!
Not only that, all MPs are well aware that senior Al Khalifa family members' exemption from paying government bills is not limited to electricity, but extends to all services. It is worthy here to point out the arrears of the Royal Court owed to Bapco.
We wish that the MP interested in asking about bills or other MPs would ask a question to Oil Minister Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa about the aviation fuel bill payments owed by the Royal court, and whether it is true that it is at approximately 40 million BD?
This goes to show that the ruling Al Khalifa family members live at the expense of the state with regards to everything, while the government makes the poor and even the dead pay. It chases the poor in their graves and leaves the rich live lavishly in their palaces.
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