Justice Ministry’s up-to-date services

Justice Ministry’s  up-to-date services

Al-Watan newspaper

JUSTICE is fundamental to everything in life. We often criticize society’s negligence toward alleviating the suffering of the poor by meeting their basic requirements. We have started this criticism several years ago and it did not go waste as we are yielding its fruits day after day.

Like we expressed our displeasure and anger over the poor services and performance of a number of ministries, we appreciate today the changes that have taken place in these ministries, even if it is small. It is our duty to pay tribute to the various aspects of improvement and development that have occurred in a number of public services as well as ministries.

Today I will start with the Ministry of Justice, as I believe that it comes on top of the pyramid of ministries. If the Justice Ministry improves its services and makes necessary efforts for its overall development it would have a positive impact on establishing justice and enhancing the performance of other ministries and agencies.

Justice is the only ministry that works to restore the rights of citizens. Today even a poor individual can file a lawsuit against any ministry or official. As a result, people’s trust in the ministry is constantly rising, especially after many individuals receiving justice after legal battles with powerful government agencies. Moreover, a substantial number of women have received justice in custody and alimony cases.

Anyone who monitors the Justice Ministry’s performance today will have a different experience from the one who did so in the past when they had to gather information about the ministry from the speculations of rumor mills and transmit data without ascertaining their source. There were no indicators available to measure the ministry’s performance.

Now the situation is totally different. A visitor to the Justice Ministry’s website can find the necessary information, and people can access this information easily without any complexities.

After setting up justice indicators, including data and statistics reflecting the reality of work at courts and notaries, the ministry was keen on following up these indicators and link them accurately in order to evaluate the performance of the ministry.

The ministry has further expanded its activities and made available its electronic services to all. It provides more than 20 electronic services on the ministry’s website, and enabled researchers and others to view transparently its 95 key indicators electronically as well as more than 475 sub-indices resulting from these indicators.

For example, today you can read the ministry’s monthly report showing the number of divorce documents issued by the relevant authorities.

Another noteworthy matter in the monthly report was the number of requests the execution courts received relating to financial claims. The report also carried data on custody and alimony suits as well as disputes on visitation rights.

This transparent reporting of activities at courts and notaries by the ministry not only reflects its workload but also shows the huge efforts its staff have exerted compared to previous years.

Speaking about financial claims, let us pause on an important point. I think the ministry has to distinguish between claims of individuals against companies, banks’ claims against individuals and individuals’ claims against individuals. The ministry should classify various types of financial claims to ensure accuracy.

What matters most is that we have to differentiate between the banks’ claims on military officers because of their long absence as well as the claims on those who have lost their jobs because of the arbitrary action of employers. The retrenched workers will not be able to pay their dues when their monthly salaries have stopped.

We know very well that banks are among the most profitable sectors in the Kingdom, which is evident from their annual profits. Therefore, the Ministry of Justice must find a just and equitable solution for those who have been declared insolvent and does not have a penny in their account. It is necessary to distinguish between those who are insolvent and those who run away to evade payment of their dues.

Many cases of defaulting payments by soldiers stationed on the frontlines came to the fore in the past and the banks did not have any shame in filing cases against them. They would not wait until the soldiers returned from the battlefront.

There are other cases involving Saudis who have been terminated from jobs because of the poor performance of the Ministry of Labor and Social Development, which has refused to annul Articles 77 and 75 in the Labor Law that allow private companies to lay off Saudis. Thousands of Saudis have lost their jobs because their employers hid behind these two articles.

Moreover, humanity has no place in banking laws. However, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) can make necessary changes in the law if it wants but nobody has so far asked SAMA to make any changes to banking rules.

We are a country that gives top priority to social support and solidarity. The minister of justice, being the chairman of the Supreme Judiciary Council, must find a quick solution to save this segment of people from all kinds of injustice.

The Labor and Social Development Ministry’s system of denying its services to unemployed Saudis is unfair because it means cutting off all their means of life. They don’t have any other way except going to prison to prove their insolvency, and forcing someone into prison to obtain an insolvency document is unfair, because truly insolvent people will have nothing in their possession and they deserve special consideration.