New Yemen Better Future: Upside down Picture [Archives:2007/1098/Opinion]

October 25 2007

Raima Al-Shami
“I have been searching for money to buy a sack of flour for six days, I prefer death to humiliation.” These are the last words uttered by the 71-year-old woman Tamim Al-Qubati after she felt unable to accumulate the required money for a sack of flour for her family members. She had no choice but “death or humiliation”. Al-Qubati is one of millions of Yemen victims who are experiencing 'New Yemen and Better Future' with starvation, poverty and suffering.

The aged women sold all her chickens that were her sole source of income for YR 1,700, but this money was not enough to buy a sack of floor whose price exceeded YR 6,000. So, no meaning for such a life on earth when all the people are sentenced to die from huger, and there will be no option except for 'death or humiliation”.

We have spent one year from the age of 'New Yemen & Better Future', the platform via which President Saleh won confidence of his people to complete 36 years in power in exchange for fulfilling promises contained in his platform, improving living standards of his people, fighting corruption, and eradicating poverty and unemployment within two years. We don't know why 'New Yemen' has turned out to be a big fool, starving people and confiscating their rights. Furthermore, people have been deceived by new constitutional amendments to grant President Saleh extra two terms and additional ten years in power.

Mr. President! Why do you deceive us? This is one of a series of questions that have been raised after more than one year of false promises including (New Yemen etter Future). Does 'New Yemen & Better Future' mean starvation? Do the Yemeni people really live the stage of 'New Yemen and Better Future' while the price per 50 kg of flour has exceeded YR 6,000? What options other than death or humiliation the Yemeni people have before them in order to get rid of the dilemma of 'New Yemen & Better Future'.

We don't say that starvation, wars and corruption are the only features of the first year of the age of 'New Yemen & Better Future', but people who live the new Yemen can assess the current situation and have their own decision on this matter. Also, nobody can say that promises made by President Ali Abdullah Saleh to establish 'New Yemen & Better Future' for his citizens have become the biggest fool in history ever committed by a ruler to deceive a country with 22 million-strong population. The task will be left for millions of people who are living the stage of new Yemen to evaluate their own situations, and it will be clear that they might not want Mr. President to 'Continue the March' and have his country progressing backward. At the end, only President Saleh has the best decision to continue his new Yemen this Way.

The situation of our homeland today makes one burst into tears of blood. The People turned to lament their fate under a totalitarian regime having starvation and poverty of its people, plus chaos, rampant corruption and civil wars, as the most important guarantees for its stay in power. It is now that the Yemeni people understood well that the regime foments conflicts, chaos and civil wars in order for citizens to remain living under the poverty line, fight hard for subsistence and suffer illiteracy and backwardness.

At the very beginning, President Saleh launched his platform “New Yemen Better Future” in the wake of last year's elections to finalize Chapter Four of Sa'ada War to the north of Yemen. Then, he shifted the conflict scene to the southern governorates in order to use force against enraged people protesting peacefully to claim their constitutional rights. In addition, many innocent demonstrators, who streamed into streets claiming a stop to the looting of public and private property, and land grab, were shot dead by the merciless police, whose duty changed from maintaining security and stability into killing oppressed citizens.

Poverty and starvation are the two most prominent features of the first year of the age of 'New Yemen Better Future' as the deteriorating living standards of people exacerbated, thereby forcing more than two-thirds of the country's population to live below the poverty line with an average per capita income of less than one dollar per day.