Kingdom will reshuffle the Shoura Council this week by changing half
of its 90 members, press reports said yesterday quoting high-level
newspaper said the new members would be sworn in by Custodian of the
Two Holy Mosques King Fahd. The sources said King Fahd would spell out
the Kingdom’s domestic and foreign policies in an address to the
Shoura Council’s annual session.
Jubair, president of the Shoura, will hold a dinner in Riyadh today in
honor of all the council members, the paper said.
Speaking to Okaz
newspaper, Ibn Jubair said the council members are allowed to express
their opinions on all matters. “There is no red line or sensitive
area. They can express their views on every issue on the agenda,”
the Shoura chief said.
opposition in the Shoura Council, Ibn Jubair said: “If you mean
opposition blocs similar to those in parliaments in other countries,
then we don’t have such a system. Any member can express his opinion
on the government’s projects and policies. Some projects win our
approval and some do not. Some bills are passed only by a small margin
when put to vote.”
Ibn Jubair denied
reports that the council would make use of the services of women as
full-time or part-time advisers. “The Shoura will seek women’s
opinions on issues related to them,” he told Al-Watan Arabic daily.
He dismissed as
unfounded reports that a special committee had been set up to select
the new council members. “There is no truth in it. The Shoura
members are nominated by the country’s ruler,” he said.
Shoura Council endorsed a free-trade zone agreement between Saudi
Arabia and Syria yesterday. It also approved the power grid project
linking the Gulf Cooperation Council states.
Dr. Hamoud Al-Badr,
the Shoura’s secretary-general, said the council meeting approved
the free-trade zone agreement after hearing a report on the project.
reviewed a proposal submitted by the economic affairs committee
calling for cancellation of the system of relations between a foreign
contractor and his Saudi agent under the foreign investment law.
deliberations the proposal was approved,” Al-Badr said.