Saudi Gazette – Dr. Fahd Al-Anazi, chairman of the special committee at the Shoura Council, said his panel has sent its reply long time ago to the general committee of the consultative body regarding a proposal to provide a five percent annual allowance to retirees of public and private sectors.

Al-Anazi, however, refused to give details of the committee’s reply on the proposal. “The special committee which was set up for the purpose has given its reply,” he added.

Al-Anazi’s statement comes after the proposal was made about eight years ago. The proposal if approved would benefit 850,000 retirees in the Kingdom and enhance their welfare. It will also help them overcome the impact of increasing prices of essential commodities.

The humanitarian proposal was made by three Shoura members in the fourth session of the Shoura about eight years ago to provide a five percent annual inflation allowance to civilian and military officers including those retirees who come under the social insurance system.

Under the proposal a clause was to be added to the retirement law to distribute an annual allowance of not less than five percent, equal to the annual inflation rate.

The proposal was presented by Mohammed Al-Quwaihes and Yousuf Al-Maimani, two Shoura members, before leaving the consultative council at the end of their term during the fifth session of the Council. Mohammed Abu Saq, who continued in the Council’s sixth session, backed the move. Abu Saq was later appointed as the minister of state for Shoura affairs.

After the Council’s advisory committee agreed to take up the proposal considering its legality it was passed to the Management and HR Committee, which met on Jumada Al-Akhira 6, 1429H to discuss the proposal with the three Shoura members.

After conducting detailed studies, the committee presented its recommendations to the Shoura and gave its opinion that the proposal was not suitable for further studies. The new development came following the formation of a special committee to discuss the issue on Safar 2, 1431H.

But the proposal did not make any breakthrough in the following years and the Shoura members who presented it had left the body at the end of their terms. Meanwhile, there were proposals to set up a national reserve fund and a retirement reserve fund but the Shoura did not approve them.

As a result, the five percent allowance proposal still remains in the corridors of the Shoura without making any substantial progress to realize the hopes and aspirations of retirees.

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