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Women in Saudi Arabia …lead the 2030 development train

King Abdulaziz Foundation launches an enrichment initiative for Saudi women
King Abdulaziz Foundation launches an enrichment initiative for Saudi women

Successive achievements and gains, achieved by Saudi women, with the support and guidance of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and his Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

These gains and accomplishments aim at empowering Saudi women, investing their energies, enhancing their position, and giving them more rights on the path to achieving gender equality, allowing women to play an important role in development, which contributes to accelerating the steps towards achieving the 2030 vision.

In this regard, the past few days have witnessed the achievement of a number of accomplishments for Saudi women, in the legal, academic and security fields, highlighting the leadership’s confidence in women and their support for leadership positions in various fields.

On the 89th National Day … legal gains boost the status of Saudi women.

Among the most prominent of these achievements is the appointment of 13 women to the new council of the Human Rights Commission, representing half of the members of the council, as well as the appointment of Dr. Lilak Al-Safadi as president of the electronic university, as the first woman to preside over a Saudi university whose students are of both sexes, in addition to appointing the first woman in the Royal Guard.

These achievements are the fruits of the reform program led by the Saudi Crown Prince, Architect of Vision 2030, under the patronage and supervision of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.

More details about these accomplishments, their implications, and their goals are reviewed by LEADERS magazine in the following report:

Realization of my rights

In the context of the full royal confidence in women and that they are responsible for making qualitative efforts in various fields, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz, order to reconstitute the Human Rights Commission Council, was issued in its fourth session for a period of 4 years, and to appoint 13 women to the Commission’s council, including It represents half of the members of the Council.

A woman in Saudi Arabia flying the flag of the Kingdom

Regarding the significance of this important step, the President of the Human Rights Commission, Dr. Awad bin Saleh Al-Awwad, affirmed that the approval of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to appoint 13 women to the Council of the Commission, representing half of the members of the Council is “a complement to the efforts made by the Kingdom’s leadership to empower women to occupy positions Leadership in various fields, and you will be of assistance to achieve what the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques aspires to serve this country. “

The First Female head of a Saudi university

On the academic level, the Saudi Minister of Education, Dr. Hamad Al-Sheikh revealed the royal approval to appoint Dr. Lilac Bint Ahmed Al-Safadi as President of the Electronic University, as the first woman to chair a Saudi university that includes both male and female students.

Al-Safadi extended thanks and appreciation to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, and to Prince Muhammad bin Salman, the Crown Prince, on the occasion of her assignment to head the Saudi Electronic University.

This dear confidence promised a medal to be proud and motivated to exert more effort and giving with the employees of the university to achieve the aspirations of rational leadership and work to revive and advance the university education sector in the Kingdom in line with the goals of the Kingdom’s 2030 vision.

Al-Safadi explained that she looks forward with all the university officials and employees to continue the excellence and success and provide the educational environment that all university students seek in all disciplines, stages and branches to complete their education with full ability and distinction.

 Dr. Lilak bint Ahmed Al-Safadi is president of the electronic university, as the first woman to head a Saudi university.

Dr. Lilak Al-Safadi is considered a distinguished scientific competency, having worked as CEO for more than 20 years in business development, business consulting and strategic leadership.

She has a steady record of success in identifying business opportunities, strategic partners, markets and channels with the greatest potential, and has participated in more than 50 research papers in press conferences and articles, in areas of research of interest such as e-commerce, artificial and commercial intelligence.

She also served as Vice President and National Technology Officer at Microsoft in January 2020, is a member of the faculty at King Saud University, director of the Incubator for Women’s Technology, and is responsible for developing the Center for Entrepreneurship in the Women’s and Medical Sciences Departments.

She also worked as a consultant to the governor of the General Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises, and a consultant to the Vice-Presidency for Planning, Quality and Development at the Saudi Electronic University.

Al-Safadi is a graduate of University of Wollongong with a Ph.D. in Computer Science 1998-2002 and MS in Computer Science 1993-1995 and majored in Software Engineering.

A woman with a royal guard

In the context of the important jobs held by women during the past few days that were previously reserved for men, a week ago it was revealed the appointment of the first woman in the Saudi Royal Guard.

The revelation of the news came after Prince Sattam bin Khalid Al Saud published a picture of a young woman wearing black Saudi Royal Guard clothing.

The move was met with great support by many Saudi tweets gathered by the # Royal Guard # hashtag on Twitter.

The tweet was republished with different addresses, all of which met the role of Saudi women and stood by men in all situations, something that reveals the existence of radical changes also in Saudi society, which has become not only more receptive to the work of women, but has become supportive and encouraging for them, in an important achievement of leadership Saudi.

Vision 2030

These achievements would encourage the full participation of women in the labor market, and increase their empowerment, and their entry into more jobs and fields that were reserved for men, which would increase the percentage of women working in the Kingdom, and increase their contribution to the development of their society and the economy of their countries.

Vision 2030 aims to increase the contribution of women in the labor market from 22% to 30% by 2030.

Finance Minister: Saudi Arabia is among the largest financial centers in the world by 2030

During his speech at the Shura Council last November 20, King Salman pledged to continue efforts “to empower Saudi women and raise their participation rates in the public and private sectors,” expressing “pride in the high rate of economic participation of women from 19.4% at the end of 2017 to 23.2% by the end of the half The second of 2019.”

King Salman’s Rule… A fruitful era of achievements

These achievements are the fruits of the reform program led by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman under the auspices and supervision of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz.

During the reign of King Salman, Saudi women achieved many gains and historical achievements. In the first year of the rule of King Salman, the first municipal elections in which women participated as voters and candidates were held in the history of the Kingdom on December 12, 2015, and culminated in the victory of 21 women with seats in the municipal council elections in its 3rd session.

Saudi women have started driving cars since June 24, 2018, in implementation of a historical order issued by the Saudi monarch on September 26, 2017, that requires women to obtain a driver’s license in “accordance with the legal controls.”

A Saudi woman issues a driver’s license

On February 14, 2018, women were allowed to start their business and benefit from government services without the need for guardian approval, and many jobs were created for women who were exclusively male.

In 2018, on January 12, Saudi Arabia started allowing women to enter Saudi stadiums for the first time, and the Public Authority for Sports announced the availability of 3 stadiums in Jeddah, Riyadh, and Dammam to receive families.

In 2019, Saudi women obtained a package of benefits, according to amendments to the systems of travel documents, civil status and work that took place on August 2 of the same year, gave those more rights to more than one level, and allowed them to obtain passports and leave the country without the requirement of guardian approval the matter.

Under the new amendments, women have the same rights guaranteed by law to men. Where the system guaranteed that she obtained a passport on her own, just like the man, and she is entitled to travel after reaching 21 years without the guardian’s approval.

The family-level amendments also gave her rights that were previously not available to her, including the right to report the newborn as her mother, after she had previously been unable, and the right to request a family registry from the Civil Status Department.

And it became the right of women to report cases of death after it was only for males aged 18 years and over, and the woman would be the head of the family equally with the husband in the case of minor children.

It was agreed to amend the labor system to give more rights to women and place them on an equal footing with men.

These decisions would remove many obstacles that stand in the way of women, achieve more empowerment for them, and drop one of the most important provisions of guardianship of women after granting them freedom to travel.

And it became an opportunity for women to be a full partner in development and a key driver for them without any reason preventing them from participating in achieving this.

A Saudi woman raises the flag of the Kingdom in one of the events

In 2019, Saudi women first assumed the position of “ambassador”, as Princess Rima Bint Bandar was appointed as the Kingdom’s ambassador to the United States on February 23 of the same year, becoming the first woman to hold this position.

In the concern of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques that women work in a safe environment, in 2018 his approval of an anti-harassment law was issued, which encouraged women to participate more broadly and open fields that were not previously open.

In response to a question about the causes and timing of recent changes in the Kingdom, the Saudi crown prince said in previous statements: “We only return to what we were (before 1979), moderate Islam open to the world and all religions, and to all traditions and peoples”.

The achievements of Saudi women are still continuing with the support of the Saudi leadership.

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