A helping hand for the President [Archives:2004/737/Viewpoint]

May 13 2004

“Yes, he is our president and the president of all Yemeni people. We should be one with him, assisting him in all aspects we can, coming out to him with ideas and advice, and ensuring him that we are behind him on the path of development.” said Dr. Abdulaziz Al-Tarib, one of the prominent Yemeni politicians who had served his country for many years.
This comes as a direct response to a pioneering initiative to establish a committee led by Yemen Times and formed of a number of prominent and qualified Yemeni entrepreneurs who have pledged to do their best in helping the president see the problems of the country, work with him to find solutions, and bring him closer to taking decisions that would indeed help Yemen become a modern country.
The committee is established to show the President that we are one team, and we all have the same fate.
Our president is a good man. He had a vital role in achieving stability in former North Yemen. He was able to achieve unity of the two Yemens. He pushed for reform and development. And today, he has ambitions to make Yemen a modern state. Why then shy away from extending a helping hand?
There are thousands of Yemenis qualified in their own fields and who have proven to be successful in their businesses and careers. Those are also loyal to their country and feel responsible towards their country. That is why the expressed eagerness to participate in Yemen's development through whatever means they have.
Those people are not doing this for the sake of pleasing the President, neither for their own businesses. They are doing it for the sake of the country's future, and to build a modern country that our next generations would live happily in.
It is important here to say that those who have praised the President on every occasion, claiming that he has done remarkable achievements and resulted in tremendous progress, and that he is the knight of Arabs who had achieved unity and made Yemen quite modern and prosperous, and so on and so forth, are in fact not doing him any good any more.
This is the time when the faithful Yemenis need to come up to the President to explain to him the realities. They need to enable him to see with regular citizens' eyes, walk in their shoes, and live the way they live. People participating in this initiative have one and only one objective in mind: establishing modern Yemen. But that can only happen if the President is aware of the problems and seriously and responsibly sits with the people connected with the people to listen to what they have to say.
The now famous quote of Dr. Mahathir Mohammed, “The government must listen to the people.” must be echoed once and again because it has a very important meaning. It signals the importance of maintaining a strong bond with the public. This is why it is essential that this initiative comes from the people and those who are connected to them.
The figures who want to participate in this campaign have great confidence in that the President would listen. This is what they want him to initially do; just listen. Apart from that, the President is free to accept or take those words into action.
Our President is probably going to be grateful to the ones who took this initiative, as he will be able to know about things for the first time.
I am sure President Saleh will seize this opportunity to open up to the hearts and minds of Yemeni people.
I am sure he will not let us down.