A Yemen Times surveyYemenis speak out on frustrations [Archives:2005/819/Community]

February 24 2005

By Khalid Ayedh
For the Yemen Times

The Yemeni people are anticipating with curious eyes since the beginning of the year saddening news from their government. The coming price hikes has become a topic of concern among a large number of people, particularly those of limited income and the unemployed.

Meanwhile, many other people are eager for the implementation of financial and administrative reforms. The civilian already has his own ambitions and hopes and the government, in contrast, has its own strategies and styles via which it attempts to justify its reforms.

To know more about what the average citizen wants from Prime Minister Bajammal's government, the Yemen Times did several person-on-the-street interviews. Following are some responses.

Action, not talk

Mohammad al-Ruba'ee talked to us as saying: “We want from Bajammal's government actions not sayings and as Arabs are famous for our spellbinding speeches and know well how to attract others' sentiments.

But I think that the Yemeni nation knows the trickery beyond speeches of the government officials. The world became a small village and the Yemeni citizen is not today as it was a long time ago.

“If the Yemeni nation sees in 2005 an improvement in the living standards, 2006 will be a good initiative for the ruling party, but if the citizen remains as remarkable now under fabricated justifications, the government as well as the ruling party will face their inevitable fall,” he added.

“Every thing has an end as it has a beginning and there are several powerful empires which fell down. The nature of the nations is that they don not tolerate the ruler for lifetime and the PGC's Government know well about this. Will it maintain its balance and power in the coming presidential elections? And will it carry out the necessary reforms quickly?”

Health and education

Lawyer Abdulfatah Aqeel believed that Bajammal's policy has to work according to the mechanism of offering education and health services for free, as well as it has to reconsider the policy of salaries and wages.

He shouted, “the civilian lives today in a miserable situation; his/her salary does not cover the monthly expenses. So, the government is recommended to sign contracts with construction companies to build houses for its employees and get the cost from his/her salary in installments.”

Summing up he explained that Bajammal is bound to face obstacles if he does not carry out financial and administrative reforms and he should have no alternative but to accelerate the reform proceedings, and this will oblige the corrupts to surrender.

Saleh should control council

On his part, Lawyer Ali Saleh Hanash said: “the misleading government is existing in Yemen and if Bajammal has the will to carry out real reforms, he is expected to show resignation as like what happened to the government of Faraj Ibn Ghanim. However, I hope Bajammal's government to work in 2005 better than it did before and I suggest that the President of the Republic take charge of the Council of Ministers, in addition to his being the president of the republic.”

Only solution to escape

Coming to Kamal al-Sunbuli, he said: “in 2005, I hope the government of Bajammal to sign contracts with any other country in order to deport us from Yemen and this will help us get rid of the terribly prevalent poverty. The Government of Bajammal and his ministers proved unable to suggest possible solutions for such a widely spreading issue; his policy is lurching here and there without reaching touchable results. The price of gas and petrol is climbing up, life has become so difficult and the only solution for the citizen is to escape from this country.

Fight terror by caring for poor

“We hope Bajammal to draw attention toward the military and security forces, as their salaries are very low and soldiers have become the most troublesome people in the slice of public-sector recruits. The government has to care for the poor and the unemployed in order not to be attracted to the terrorist organizations, Major Abdulmalik al-Ashbat said.

Fix mistakes

Adel al-Tawili, an ordinary citizen, wondered: “will the Bajammal's government intend to correct its mistakes in 2005, and do its duties fairly compared to other governments across the world who do their best to offer the best for their citizens? As the price of foodstuffs keeps on going high, how it will be possible for the jobless citizen to live.”

He strongly confirmed that if Bajammal's government keeps its current policy without showing reforms in the long run, it would help open the door of terrorism with its both shutters for the poor, considering it the last solution.

Fix prices

“We want the government to accelerate the procedures of financial and administrative reforms, to make available a fixed price list and to create more job opportunities for the idle categories, said Safwat Al-Dhabab. ” I hope the government to hold accountable the corrupts and intensify the role of the Central Organization for Control & Audit”

Wake up call

Faris al-Hanomi noted that the majority of youths are jobless and those who have jobs are the sons of officials whose jobs have been guaranteed for them since they were born.

“I do not know upon which base the revolution happened. Did it erupt on the base of discrimination between layers, or on the base of equality between them”, he added. ” I hope Bajamal's Government to assess itself as the world always moves on constant changes forward but we in Yemen go backward with the passage of years. The government has to wake up.”

Rich versus poor

Anis Zeid believes that the Yemeni ministers led extremely luxurious life and the poor and the needy, in contrast, endure hunger day after day, particularly as the price of the main foodstuffs gradually increases, the dose draws nearer and the government seems unable to put possible solutions in place. ” I want our country to be built on base of wealth for all and jobs for all,” he cried.