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Kuwaiti Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber al-Mubarak al-Sabah arrives to attend a parliament session at Kuwait's national assembly in Kuwait City on November 12, 2019. Image Credit: AFP

Kuwait City: Kuwait’s Emir Sabah Al Ahmad assigned Shaikh Jaber with forming a new government on Monday, but Jaber turned him down, apologising.

He cited allegations about irregularities and “baseless lies” about him as the reason why he could not be the new prime minister.

“Out of respect to the invaluable confidence of Your Highness and out of appreciation to the Kuwait people, I find it necessary for me first to prove my innocence,” he said in a letter to the Emir.

In a statement on Saturday, Kuwait’s Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Shaikh Nasser accused Shaikh Jaber of not seriously tackling financial irregularities in the army.

Shaikh Nasser, who took the defence ministerial portfolio in December 2017, referred the issue to the country’s top prosecutor who in turn ordered a judicial committee to investigate it.

Meanwhile, the Emir sacked Shaikh Nasser as well as second Deputy Prime Minister and the Interior Minister Shaikh Khalid Al Jarrah.

Nasser Al Sabah
Nasser Al Sabah Image Credit: Supplied

The two have been locked in a mounting dispute over alleged irregularities at an army-run fund over the past few days.

Both ministers are members of Kuwait’s ruling family.

Last week, the Emir accepted the resignation of the government led by Shaikh Jaber Mubarak amid no-confidence motions against some ministers including Al Jarrah.

Emir Sabah will address the nation Monday night on the latest developments in the country.

Accusations have recently swirled in Kuwait over alleged corruption including wasting of public money.

Earlier this month, hundreds of Kuwaitis protested outside the parliament against the outgoing government and purported state corruption.