Airline to pay compensation to Kuwaiti woman for missing ballot

March 16, 2013

A Kuwaiti court has ordered an airline to pay compensation to a Kuwaiti woman who missed the deadline to vote in the parliamentary elections after her flight was delayed.

The passenger had planned to perform Umrah and to return home in time for the legislative elections on February 2, her lawyer said.

The trip from Kuwait to Saudi Arabia was on time and proceeded smoothly, but when the passenger wanted to fly home, she faced a delay, she said.

“The return date was on February 2 and my client showed up at the Jeddah airport two hours ahead of the scheduled flight,” Dalal Al Mulla, the lawyer, said, quoted by local Arabic daily Al Rai on Monday. “She had plans to be home in time for the parliamentary elections. However, she was later informed that there was a delay and she had to wait for five hours to board the plane. By the time my client reached home, the polling stations were closed and she missed the chance to cast her ballot in the elections of the members of parliament.”

The lawyer argued that under international accords, the airline was responsible for damages resulting from delays in transporting passengers, luggage or cargos.

She said that by missing the opportunity to exercise her political and constitutional right, her client suffered severe psychological damage.

The court said that the airline would pay KD500 (Dh6,376) to the passenger and KD200 in legal fees.

Women in Kuwait were given the right to run in elections on May 17, 2005. The bill passed with 35 votes for and 23 against in a historic breakthrough for women.

In 2009, four women made history by winning seats in the parliament for the first time.

However, no woman won in the February 2012 elections whic was dominated by conservatives and tribal figures.

In the December 2012 elections, three women won seats.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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