THE CONSTITUTION

Kuwait's Constitution combines the positive aspects of both presidential and parliamentary forms of government. It is based on principles of democracy - on the sovereignty of the nation, freedom of the citizen and on equality of all citizens in the eyes of the law.

Kuwait's Constitution was drafted by an elected 20-member Constituent Assembly and 11 ministers - who joined the Assembly later. On November 1, 1962, the draft constitution was approved by the then Amir, late Sheikh Abdallah Al-Salem Al-Sabah. The Constitution came into force on January 29, 1963, when the first National Assembly convened.

The Kuwaiti Constitution, comprising 183 articles is an exhaustive document. It is divided into five parts:

  • The state and the system of government
  • Fundamental constituents of the Kuwaiti society
  •  Public rights and duties
  •  Powers
  •  General and transitional provisions

 

AMIR OF KUWAIT

H.H. SHEIKH Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah                                                              amir

  • Unanimously proclaimed as Amir of the State of Kuwait on January 29, 2006.
  • Prime Minister, as per Amiri Decree dated July 13, 2003.
  • First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, October 18, 1992.
  • Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, March 3, 1985.
  • Minister of information, February 9, 1982 in addition to his posts as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs. 
  • Deputy Prime Minister, February 16, 1978, in addition to his post as Minister of Foreign Affairs. - Acting Minister of Information, February 2, 1971
  • February 3, 1975, in addition to his post as Minister of Foreign Affairs.
  • Foreign Minister, January 28,1963. His Highness continued to assume this post throughout all the governments that were formed since the Independence until April 20, 1991. 
  • Minister of Guidance and Information, January 17, 1962.
  • Head of the Department of Press and Publications, 1955.
  • Member of the Organizational Body of the Higher Council.
  • Member of the Building and Construction Council. 
  • Completed his studies with private tutors. 
  • Educated at Kuwait schools. 
  • Born in Kuwait on June 6, 1929. 

 

CROWN PRINCE

H.H. Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah                                                                       crownprince

The Crown Prince is the Heir Apparent to the Amir of the State of Kuwait. According to the Constitution of the State of Kuwait, "The Heir Apparent shall be designated within one year at the latest from the date of the accession of the Amir. His designation shall be affected by an Amiri Order upon the nomination of the Amir and the approval of the National Assembly, which shall be approved by a majority vote of its members in a special sitting."

Kuwait's current Crown Prince is HH Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. He is the brother of HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah. HH Sheikh Nawaf was born in 1937 and received education in several Kuwaiti schools.

HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah issued a decree on January 30, 2006, nominating HH Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah as Crown Prince. The Amiri decree said that HH the Amir recommended HH Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah for the Crown Prince’s post in accordance with Article 4 of the Constitution and law 4/1964 for Emirate Succession; and based on HH Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah’s recognised integrity and merit for the Crown Prince’s post.

HH Sheikh Nawaf has been a prominent figure who worked for the establishment and development of the State of Kuwait. He was appointed on Febraury 12, 1962 as Governor of Hawalli, which was his first political post.

On March 19, he was appointed as the Minister for Interior until he resigned on July 3, 1986. HH Sheikh Nawaf was then appointed again as the Minister for Interior in 1986 to serve at this post until he was reassigned as the Minister for Defence first on January 26, 1988 and again on June 20, 1992. On April 20, 1991, he was oppointed the Minister for Social Affairs and Labour to serve until October 17,1992. Two years later, on October 16, 1994, he was appointed as the Deputy Chief of the National Guards to serve until he was appointed as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Interior on July 13, 2003. HH Sheikh Nawaf was then appointed as the First Deputy Prime Minister on October 16, 2003, while he continued serving the an Interior Minister.

Among HH Sheikh Nawaf’s notable achievements was the creation of the Legal Department and the Mayors’ Affairs Department at the Interior Ministry. HH Sheikh Nawaf also played a significant role in the establishment of the Private Contracts Department and the Legal Department at Defence Ministry. He also established the Legal Affairs Unders ecretary’s post at the Ministry of Social Affairs. During his term as Interior Minister, HH Sheikh Nawaf always stressed the significance of teamwork to preserve the unity of Kuwait.

In the humanitarian domain, HH Sheikh Nawaf established a hospital for social care centres during his term as the Minister for Social Affairs and sponsored several cultural, recreational and social activities for the National Guards personnel.

HH Sheikh Nawaf is the father of four sons and a daughter. Among his interests is horse riding.

 

THE CABINET

Executive power in Kuwait is vested in the Cabinet or the Council of Ministers. It is headed by the Prime Minister, a position held traditionally by the Crown Prince. The Prime Minister is appointed through an Amiri Decree. The ministers of the Cabinet are appointed by the Amir on the recommendation of the Prime Minister. According to the Kuwaiti constitution, the number of ministers in a Cabinet must not exceed one-third the strength of the National Assembly. This number does not include the Head of the National Guard, the Amiri Diwan Affairs Minister, the Amir’s Advisor and the Chairman of the Audit Bureau.

The Cabinet controls the state institutions. It is responsible for the general policy of the government and its execution. Each minister in the Cabinet holds one or more portfolios. The Prime Minister and his ministers are accountable to the Amir and the National Assembly.

Besides executive powers, the Constitution grants the Cabinet authority to declare defensive war, proclaim martial law, and promulgate law decrees when the National Assembly is not in session or its legislative term has expired, grant pardons, and issue executive and administrative regulations.

© 2017 Embassy of the State of Kuwait - Vienna
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