Democracy and Development [Archives:1999/42/Law & Diplomacy]

October 18 1999

It is only two months left and the whole globe will move into a new millennium described by many experts as an era of globalization. In this global context, democracy is seen as a substantial and best way of governance.
Yemen, as a part of this global context, is witnessing marvelous changes and transformations in democratization. Holding parliamentary and presidential is, of course, a good stride towards building a new modern civil society based on a pluralistic and democratic system. I have participated in the presidential election actively and was happy to find people in queue waiting for their turn to vote. Elections are an outcome of democracy. To be more real, we are facing a lot of ordeals and problems in our democratic transitions, which should be considered a price for our democratic movement. This transition is actually a courageous step. However, we should not keep singing and praising our democratic process and our achievements in this regard. It is high time that we moved into action and deeds. President Saleh has oriented the government to give an overall program to overhaul the situation. That is very promising. The government must find all the potential ways to solve our problems and implement the instructions of the president. His election program substantially translates the aspirations of the people. We felt that he would do something concrete to alleviate the sufferings of the people. The government should work hand in hand to salvage the country. President Saleh has contributed well to the betterment of the people. Moreover, he is tabled as one of the most important pioneering figures in the modern history of Yemen. I could understand from his speech that he is willing to change the society. But, corrupt officials are there to hinder any effort for change and reform. We should say that that is enough and now we should start building our own society. A war should be launched against corrupt people. This is in order to ensure a more stabilized situation that makes us able to build a new society based on law and order. Reforming the economy and improving the living standard of the people should be prioritized in the agenda of the people in charge.
Our democratic transition will not be fruitful and promising unless it is accompanied by development. In other words, transformation should not take place only in the field of democracy. Development and transformations in all aspects of life must occur too.
In conclusion, democracy and development should go hand in hand. That is, development should be one of the outcomes and fruits of democracy.
By: Yahia Ali Abdu