(Bloomberg) -- A broad shakeup of state institutions deepened in Kuwait after top officials in the Gulf state’s pension fund were asked to resign.
Director General Meshal Al-Othman and three of his deputies, including Raed Al-Nisf, were asked to quit Kuwait’s Public Institution for Social Security (PIFSS). The officials had spent years revamping the roughly $137 billion fund, which owns a quarter of US private equity firm Stone Point Capital LLC.
The shift comes ahead of parliamentary elections in the OPEC member state on Thursday. The officials resigned from the fund under pressure from Kuwait’s powerful political opposition, one person familiar with the changes said.
Opposition politicians have been calling for the government to remove any officials from state bodies deemed to be associated with the era under the former leadership, regardless of performance.
Kuwait Overhauls State Boards After Government Vows Shake Up
Ahmad Hamad Al-Thunayan, an official at the fund, was appointed as interim director general, according to an official document seen by Bloomberg. Representatives at the finance ministry and the PIFSS didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
This week’s elections come after ruler Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, called for the dissolution of parliament via a speech made by his crown prince. The crown prince said the aim was to break a political deadlock that paralyzed policymaking.
Years of squabbling between elected lawmakers and a government appointed by the ruling Al-Sabah family have repeatedly set back fiscal reforms and development.
The officials who resigned from the fund were part of a management team hired in 2017 to overhaul the state-owned institution, after its former head was found guilty of personally profiting from the organization over decades.
The PIFSS recorded 20.9% growth in assets in the last fiscal year. Thanks to its growth, parliament approved a law to distribute a one-time special dividend of $10,000 to every Kuwaiti retiree earlier this year.
The fund also owns 10% of TowerBrook Capital Partners LP.
(Corrects to remove out-of-date information on stake in Oak Hill Advisors)
©2022 Bloomberg L.P.
BNN Bloomberg Picks
Eric Nuttall's Top Picks: November 25, 2022
A muted Black Friday for Canadians amid inflation, online shopping and longer deals
Holiday shopping: Expert advice on finding deals and saving
Inflation relief measures should be well targeted and temporary, says Macklem
How stay-at-home spouses can build credit
Looking for tax-loss season bargains for 2023 and beyond: Berman