Riyadh - e-Media
The Council of Ministers chaired by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah on Monday urged members of municipal councils who won recent nationwide elections to live up to their voters’ expectations and work for improving services.
“The Cabinet congratulated those who won the municipal elections and wished them success. It hoped that the new bodies would work for improving municipal services across the country,” said Culture and Information Minister Abdul Aziz Khoja.
Municipal elections were conducted all over the Kingdom last Thursday. Some 5,324 candidates competed for 1,056 seats, which constitute half the seats in the country's 285 councils. About 16,000 officials were deployed in 748 polling centers to manage the vote.
The Cabinet meeting also reviewed the latest developments in the region and other parts of the world. It reiterated the stand expressed by Saudi Arabia on these events in the UN General Assembly last week.
The Cabinet denounced Israeli atrocities violating human rights of the Palestinian people and its plan to construct more Jewish settlements in occupied Gilo in East Jerusalem. “It shows Israel’s lack of good intentions … and its desire to prevent the formation of a viable Palestinian state,” it added.
The Cabinet appreciated King Abdullah’s contribution of $37 million for the “Messengers of Peace” program for 10 years.
World Scouts held a camp at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Thuwal northwest of Jeddah to launch the program. Sweden’s King Carl Gustav, honorary president of the International Scout Fund, conferred on King Abdullah the Bronze Wolf medal, which is the highest scout honor.
Referring to the quality forum, the Cabinet said King Abdullah had told the forum that quality has become a strategic choice in modern times for economic progress. “We should make quality our basic principle in order to compete with others in the international market,” the king told the forum.
The Cabinet expressed its satisfaction of Saudi Arabia achieving 16th position (from 26th position in 2010) in the Global Competitiveness Report of World Economic Forum for 2011-12, Khoja said.
The Cabinet endorsed the free trade agreement between the Gulf Cooperation Council and European Free Trade Association, which was signed in June 2009. It also approved the bylaw of the National Commission for implementing the ban on chemical and biological weapons.