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A judiciary flying with one wing


Last updated: Monday, November 12, 2012 12:56 AM

Abid Khazandar
Al-Riyadh newspaper

To fly with one wing – this is a true story that I told before. I see nothing wrong in telling this story again because there is a valuable lesson to be learned.

When Charles de Gaulle came to power in France after World War Two, he convened the first meeting of the Council of Ministers. During the meeting, de Gaulle asked his ministers on the general situation in France (de Gaulle lived in London during the days of the war). They told him that the economy was bad, and the education and administration sectors were also performing poorly. Then, he asked them about the judiciary. They told him that corruption had not hit the judiciary yet, to which he replied: “So we can restore glory to France. If the judiciary is just, then we can reform the state.”

Justice is the basis of rule of law, and judiciary is the guardian of law.

In the Kingdom, rules and regulations are issued but never executed, especially in financial matters. This means that our judiciary is trying to fly with one wing, which is impossible.

I personally know people who managed to secure judgments in financial disputes but failed to get these judgments executed even after many years. The court verdicts are just ink on paper, and do not have the worth of even the paper on which they were written.

When a citizen goes to the governorate, which is the concerned authority for the execution of judgments, he is told: Bring the defendant. Of course, he is unable to do this by himself and is usually unable to find any cooperation from the local administration, intelligence officials or police in producing the defendant in front of the governorate officials. This also happens in issues of alimony — divorcees and their children continue to live without getting any monetary compensation for years.

Minister of Justice Muhammad Al-Issa said the new executive law would bridge all the gaps in our judicial system. He also pointed out: “A just judicial system would strive to enforce its provisions unless arbitrariness found refuge in it.”

These words describe the real fact on the ground. The new law must be issued at the earliest possible time as we, the people, are in dire need of it.

Note: Local Viewpoints are translated from the Arabic press to bring current mainstream opinions published in Saudi media to a worldwide audience. The views and opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Saudi Gazette or of its team.
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