Together for change [Archives:2007/1105/Opinion]

November 22 2007

Mohammed Dhaifullah Hashem
It has become a widespread phenomenon that aged people, youths, women and kids in this country usually criticize the standing regime and vent their anger at the miserable conditions they are living, as well as the unstable situation which, they say, is symptomatic of the government's wrong policies. It is now that the Yemeni people are experiencing the worst situation in their national history as the US dollar is priced at YR 200 and inflation reached its climatic point while citizens found themselves obliged to acclimatize with ongoing price hikes.

Education was offered for free, self-sufficiency was available everywhere and water was flowing in valleys. But now the unwise regime is responsible for water shortage, aridity of valleys and farmlands, exhaustion of fisheries and minerals, mishandle of loans, plus the lack of honesty and credibility. It is also responsible for exhausting any beauteous elements of nature in this nation.

If all the Yemeni people, including the opposition forces and civil community organizations, don't unify their lines and come together for the sake of required changes to rescue the country from unknown calamity, they will regret seeing their unexpected destiny. It is impossible for submissive people awaiting the unknown to liberate their nation and themselves from oppression, looting and poverty. Change can only be made by free and open-minded people, who detest injustice, totalitarianism and oppression, and have faith in justice, security, liberty and equality.

Submissive people are those who admit that the ruler is the only eligible and more able force to lead this nation. Change can never be made through optimism and hopes, since it is the product of sincere struggle. What remains when people run out of optimism and turn pessimistic perceiving that situations are impossible to improve in the future? When the regime talks about corruption and comprehensive reforms, people consider such talks as a green light for corrupt officials to do what they want.

The absence of strong and decisive words regarding changes, and scarcity of real men to advocate changes helped generate corruption, injustice, illegal influence, chaos and poverty. The current situation only produced yes-statesmen, who only articulate what is dictated to them. Injustice has its harmful consequences on any ruler, irrespective of his power and tyranny, and history is the best witness to this while punishment will cover the tyrant and the silent community that never reacts to what is happening.

If judicious and wise people don't stand firmly against this regime, the catastrophe will occur excluding no one. This time, the alarm bells are totally different, as everything around us warns of a blazing catastrophe having rulers and the ruled its firewood. Judicious people have to warn the regime that “What has happened until now is enough and no need for pouring more oil on the fire.” They should say to this regime that “By fortune, you have ruled Yemen and stayed in the throne for a long time, and no one of those who ruled the country before you was as lucky as you.”

This regime, which is so lucky to remain in power for a longer period of time, might have converted the widely-spread rage and dissatisfaction into gratitude, blessing and immortalization by letting the constitutional institutions operate according to the jurisdictions delegated to them. And then it could oversee performance of these institutions and hold them to account in event they failed to do their duties well or made difficultly correctable mistakes. Regretfully, the unwise regime controlled all the sensitive businesses and disarmed the constitutional authorities from any jurisdictions devolved to them by effective laws.

History immortalizes great men only such as the late Zayed Bin Sultan, former ruler of United Arab Emirates, Mahatir Mohammed, former Prime Minister of Malaysia, Nilsson Mandela, former leader of South Africa, and others, who were honored by their peoples. Such leaders led their countries toward the best and had never been engaged in recollecting alleged past achievements, nor did they badmouth their peoples.

All the people have to bear in mind that an unprecedented catastrophe is nearer and nearer, unless the government takes tough measures to put a stop to rampant corruption, injustice, looting of public and private property, and confiscation of citizens' rights. Those who underestimate what has been happening in the southern governorates thirteen years now are either stupid or foolish because they don't realize that inhabitants of these governorates have been suffering repeated agonies. In addition, stability, security and justice in these governorates were replaced by looting of property, chaos, human right abuses, liquidation and marginalization.

Those who denounce sit-ins and protests in the oppressed governorates should rather put the blame on the unwise officials, who created such congestions. The unwise officials usually recollect their victory in the 1994 Civil War, pride such achievement and renew wounds of the war every year by producing intolerable and disgusting words without taking into account the inevitable consequences of their conducts in this respect.

People should blame those who left wounds of the war uncured without providing any kind of treatment, however, the past 13 years were enough for healing these wounds. The one who never tasted bitterness of the southern governorates should rather remain silent and give no comment.

The northern governorate of Sa'ada had tasted the same bitterness in 2004 and is now suffering consequences of the wars. The governorate was wholly destroyed in the repeated wars due to the use of various types of heavy weaponry, which devastated the infrastructure and killed thousands of innocent civilians and soldiers. As a result of the government's wrong polices in dealing with the wars , jails in Sa'ada, Hodeida and Hajja were heavily crowded with prisoners, employees were dismissed from jobs and thousands of houses turned into wreckage. Most of the cities and villages in the governorate were transferred into military barracks and checkpoints while locals were charged with rebelling against those who beat the drum for the regime (Officials who pretend loyalty with the regime in order to reserve their illegal interests).

Joint Meeting Parties have to prepare themselves from now for organizing mass protests and sit-ins nationwide in order to prevent the anticipated collapse of the country. Opposition leaders have to bear in mind that nothing but enthusiastic revolution can put an end to corruption and corrupt officials who are leading the nation toward unknown destiny.

Source: Al-Thawri Weekly.