Dr. N’oman to YT:”26 September Revolution embodied hopes and ambitions of present and future generations” [Archives:2005/880/Reportage]

September 26 2005


Dr. Yasin Saeed N'oman, Secretary General of the Yemeni Specialist Party (YSP), is one of the prominent Yemeni personalities who gained reputation for their precious efforts that culminated with the establishment of the national unity in May 1990. He is one of the few people who strongly objected to the secession of the country.

Dr. N'oman favored to leave Yemen and reside in the UAE after the 1994 war broke out. By the advent of 2005, he decided to return home along with a number of YSP leaders to reshuffle their party. In the YSP's fifth conference, he was elected secretary general of the party to succeed, Saleh Ubad Moqbil, the symbol of struggle who decided to rest after an old age. He returned home with the intention of taking part in building a democratic country to fulfill the ambition of all Yemenis.

Before achieving the national unity, Dr. Yasin Sa'eed N'oman had been appointed several times and occupied prestigious posts such as the Parliament Speaker in 1993. Due to his support for justice and democratic values the majority of Yemenis loves him.

In the YSP's head-office, the Yemen Times met with Dr. N'oman while he was discussing the future of the party with some party members.

He dedicated part of his precious time to give answers to the following questions:

Q: Monday the 26th of September is the 43rd anniversary September Revolution as the majority of the Yemeni people calls it, and a military coup d'etat as some politicians favor to term it. How do you name it, how do you assess the course of years following the revolution, and why did leaders who have consecutively ruled Sana'a for over 40 years now fail to achieve the six goals of the 26 September Revolution except for achieving the national unity?

A: At the outset, it is my pleasure to congratulate all the Yemeni people on the 43rd anniversary of the 26 September Revolution. Undoubtedly, all what is said about the 26 September Revolution by any party will never leave an impact to such a meaningful word “the Revolution”, the event which fulfilled hopes and ambitions of generations. If the current generation could not achieve its goals, the generations to come, with no doubt, will do so.

Regarding the names and terms given to the 26 September Revolution, I have been accustomed to naming it “Revolution”. When I first heard about it in the Sana'a Radio as a “Revolution”, I strongly believed that it is so. In a particular stage of history, it became a revolution of hope and ambition for the Yemeni people and the regime, the latter is known as the dominance of the State's affairs all around the world. These days we can say the 26 September Revolution has a positive effect in our minds, and the minds of the past and contemporary generations.

When assessing the revolution, it should not be assessed by regime, but by the great hope linked to it, which will be, for sure, fulfilled by the generations to come.

Talking about the six goals as none has been achieved is an exaggeration since various things have been relatively achieved, mainly in the respective of economic and political life. But the goal that reads: “eliminating social discrimination” has not been achieved. Social discrimination has vastly spread due to the false economic policies adopted by the consecutive regimes.

In other areas, something has been achieved but without the ambition, this means such revolved within the scope and limits of the regime and not at the level of the Revolution.

Q: Numerous politicians and military leaders recollected events prior to and after the 26 September and 14 October Revolutions; no two people agreed on a unified issue, so how best do you assess what has been allegedly written about the two great events?

A: First, I do not want to say that politicians should not write history, since politicians deform history when they write about it. It is the right of politicians to express their viewpoints on certain events and they should not write history since it is the major of historians, based on several historic facts. The writer of history should rather be neutral and not a politician.

Sorrowfully, in the Arab community, we usually find that a politician experiences two stages of his age; in the first stage he makes confusions to correct them by writing in the second stage. Therefore, of what has been written so far, there is something good and something bad.

Q: What about those who endorse official and personal documents?

A: I cannot evaluate all what has been written and published and I respect every one's effort, but let me say that history is written in another language, another style and a different method, which is the method of historical research. The style of history is different from what politicians write.

Q: Do you consider May 22-1990 a real revolution that is more important that the 26 September and 14 October Revolutions, or do those who believe so exaggerate?

A: I think that each revolution has preliminary steps, and the 22 May is a revolution that is not different from the 26 September and 14 October Revolutions. The 22 May event should not be assessed by the State or the political regime, it can rather be assessed via its ambition and national project. In the light of this project may or may not be achieved.

Q: Can you pleas give us a glimpse of your tasks and efforts to help the YSP restore its weight and status in the country?

A: We have numerous tasks to do, and if we discuss a group of them, the matter will be a bit complicated, however, the main tasks focus on empowering the party and as its political and intellectual role is difficult to be attained, it is impossible to talk about future tasks. Now reshuffling the party is underway in order to enable us perform all the political and national tasks during the coming period of time.

Q: What is the point you reached by dialoguing with the ruling people's General Congress and other parties?

A: We have a committee to dialogue with the ruling party. The committee is responsible for discussing the normalization of relations with the ruling party and how we can purify the political life from antagonism. Regarding the preliminary dialogues with the opposition joint meeting parties, they concentrated on political reforms and we also have a joint political program to discuss together.

Q: Many party leaders talked about reforming the course of the Re-unification and the change of regime, how can this be done and what is the required political regime?

A: Reforming the Re-unification course has become an important political term and we are taking the matter seriously. Our talk should be in and not outside the party; this means that during the last period of time, talk on reforming the Re-unification course took place within limits of the party. After the party's latest conference, reforming the Re-unification course has become an acceptable political term within the party, but what is the content of such a phrase. This is what we are seeking and discussing and we all should reach a joint attitude toward such a phrase.

Concerning the change of political regime, the YSP never lifted slogans claiming the change of regime. We do not only talk about reform as others do, rather we devote our talk to reforming the political regime in a way to maintain democracy and political plurality. Democracy should be pushed to a particular goal that is the peaceful handover of power. If the reform we are talking about requires constitutional amendments, it certainly will require legal amendments. We are discussing such a topic and at the same time take into account an important matter.

The YSP believe that women rights issue has been ignored, however, in the future a positive political role for women is required, and reforming the situation of women should be part of the political reform.

Q: Are you still adherent to the document of pledge and accord as a means for political reform?

A: We never deal with things as if they are dignified objects or “the cow of Hindus, we do not deal with abstract names but with the contents of things. Contents we are talking about today concerning the political reforms are all embraced in the document of agreement and accord. So what does matter is the content and not forms.

With respect to directions of the opposition joint meeting that is now discussing the political reform, we have a plenty of ideas and viewpoints to be presented for discussion.

The ideas start by talking about local governance with entire powers and also about the constitutional reforms and reinforcing the democratic life. All these points are all devoted to reforming the political regime, a fact topping the agendas of political parties, even the PGC. I think that the PGC is also interested in political reforms because it suffers from the dominance of the state as other political parties do.

Q: Is it true that there are numerous voters who want the political regime to be a parliamentary and a presidential regime?

A: We should not predict events before they occur. We want a political regime based on a primary base. This means the government should be responsible and at the same time held to account.

Q: Several newspapers mentioned that you have new plans, which you work on implementing and they are related to the media address of the party. Do not you mind giving us an idea about the limitations and principles of this address.

A. There is no principles and I am not a person who favors to talk about principles. The exalted principles in the life of politicians are fabricated except for what is really known as the religious principles. In our media address, we want to avoid enraging address and prefer a just one. The enraging address, which is consumed and loses its vitality in a short period of time, should be avoided. We laid more emphasis on the opposing, objective and critical address that usually yields positive results. This conduct will help take us from the circle of action and reaction in order to avoid an address of crisis. We should avoid such a kind of address in order not to be blockaded in an enraging address judged by reaction.

Q: What about the properties and facilities belonging to the YSP, is the government ready to return them to the party?

A: We claimed the authorities to return our properties that are seized by them and specified them. We discussed this more than once and the matter is left to them. Regarding the headquarters of the party, which is now occupied by the Ministry of transportation, President Saleh gave frank directives to officials to quit the building, but these officials are still hesitant.

Q: Any final comment?

A: We are talking about the project of political reforms and each party in the opposition joint meeting has a viewpoint, however there are common factors in the light of which we prepare the state of the peaceful transfer of power. We need not talk on a democracy separated from this fact. This state that was built in a particular stage of history objectively contradicts the course of democracy due to various reasons. In brief, it is my pleasure to say that we want the state to be prepared for the peaceful handover of power.