Sultan Qaboos presides over annual meeting of Council of Oman

His Majesty Sultan Qaboos says achievements made have changed the quality of life, putting Sultanate in prominent position on regional, global maps

Achievements struck balance between preserving good heritage and keeping up with the spirit, science and technology of the age

Legal, judicial systems developed to interact with developments of the modern time

Head of Sultanate Court: His Majesty’s speech is comprehensive future vision taking into account nation’s principles

HE Abdul Rahman Bin Hamad Al Attiyah, GCC Secretary-General hailed the Royal content of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said’s speech which he delivered before the annual convening of the Council of Oman on the 40th anniversary of the Sultanate’s blessed march.

The Royal speech covered important aspects, especially on the national level as it covered the march of the blessed Renaissance witnessed by the Sultanate in the different domains. He added that His Majesty the Sultan’s endeavours to ensure welfare, prosperity, security, stability, wellbeing, prosperity, science and knowledge for the loyal people of Oman are praised and appreciated on all levels.

Al Attiyah said that the great and tangible achievements witnessed and still being witnessed by the Sultanate under the wise leadership of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said are evident to everyone, therefore no further proof of them is needed. These achievements of the Sultanate over the past 40 years are the talk of everyone. At the Royal speech, His Majesty the Sultan, stressed on the importance of safeguarding and protecting them so that the next generations can continue along the blessed path.

At the end of his statement, Attiyah expressed deep appreciation and pride for the wisdom and experience of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said. He also praised His Majesty’s infinite support to the GCC march, which positively contributed to continuing its work till it has become a model on both the regional and international levels.

The Shura Council office held its meeting under the chairmanship of HE Sheikh Ahmed Bin Mohammed Al Isa’ee, Chairman of the Shura Council.

The Shura office congratulated His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said on the occasion of the 39th National Day and affirmed the greatness of the occasion for everyone living on this kind land.

They appealed to the Almighty to bestow blessings onto His Majesty the Sultan and grant him good health, long life and welfare.

The office reviewed the contents of the Royal speech of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said at the annual convening of the Council of Oman on November 16 at Hisn Al Shomoukh in the Wilayat of Manah where His Majesty the Sultan reviewed the Blessed Renaissance march which made steady strides in its bid to achieve sustainable development and achieve further progress and prosperity for whoever living on this kind land.

The office assured that His Majesty the Sultan’s visions and contents will always be on the agenda of the Shura Council and the source of guidance in the Council’s different activities.

The office discussed the progress of work by the permanent committees, the issues currently under discussion, or proposed for discussion during the current annual session. It also discussed the issue of high auto insurance rates.

The office looked into a number of desires and parliamentary questions addressed to members of the Shura Council by some government authorities on some issues. It also discussed a number of issues including road safety, speed breakers on the internal roads, limiting truck loads and development projects in Dhofar Governorate.

The office discussed the letters from ministries and government units including the letter from the national economy minister on organizing a symposium on the use of coal for energy generation in the Sultanate. It also studied a number of annual ministerial reports directed to the Shura Council from some ministries on their annual performance and achievements.

As part of the international activities, the Shura Council discussed a number of circulars and invitations forwarded to the Council from some regional and international unions and parliaments on bilateral relations and issues of mutual interest.

HE Dr. Yahya Bin Mahfoudh Al Mantheri, Chairman of the State Council, said that the Royal speech delivered by His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said at the opening of the Annual Session of the Council of Oman has enlightened the path and identified the objectives towards a bright future for the country and its noble people.

He also pointed out that His Majesty’s speech underlined the fundamentals of the Omani domestic and foreign policy.

In a statement to Oman News Agency, Mantheri added that His Majesty’s speech stresses the importance of the youthful generation to support the march and carry out their duty in serving the country to make it a blessed path for them and the next generations.

Mantheri said that what had been achieved in the Sultanate for the past 40 years of the Blessed Renaissance led by His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said is a pride for all Omanis living on this good land.

He pointed out that after forty years, Oman has become a modern country with complete structure and firm pillars, proud of its ancient past and glorious present and proceeding at a steady pace looking forward to a bright future.

He prayed to Allah the Almighty to protect His Majesty, grant him good health and a long life as an inspired leader for the precious country, renewing loyalty and allegiance to His Majesty to move forward behind his wise leadership.

His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said presided over the annual convening of the Council of Oman at the Council’s hall in Al Khuwair.

His Majesty the Sultan delivered the Royal Speech. At the beginning of the speech, His Majesty said: “It is a blessing of God which deserves our many thanks and appreciation, that we meet a new year after year in this Blessed Council, through which we look forward, with full confidence and hope, to fulfill more achievements for a stable and secure Oman, with God’s assistance and guidance.”

His Majesty affirmed that he was sparing no effort and will continue to spare no effort in order to provide human resources with all the help they need to develop, sharpen and train. We will also provide them opportunities for education by which they may acquire useful knowledge, experience and necessary technical skills which will be needed in the labor market and are required by the sustainable development programs in various fields.

His Majesty explained that he was closely following the important steps taken to develop the skills and abilities of citizens in IT and communications, which is considered as an engine behind the growth in this millennium and further developing e-government services. His Majesty called upon on all government institutions to speed up enhancing their performance and facilitating their services by applying digital technology in order to usher the Sultanate into the constantly evolving fields of knowledge.

While His Majesty commended the government’s performance, at the same time, His majesty wished to stress the need for a constant revision of the State’s administrative system.

His Majesty also affirmed that placing the public interest over and above any other consideration is one of the main pillars to sustainable development.

His Majesty also emphasized that enforcement of justice is imperative and inevitable and that our monitoring apparatus is alert and dedicated to carrying out their duties and responsibilities in order to safeguard the country’s achievements. Regarding the economic situation being experienced by the world, His Majesty said the policies adopted by His Majesty’s government over recent years have contributed - praise be to God - to avert the effects of this situation affecting our economy.

“In this regard we confirm the continuation of the development and building policies in accordance with the endorsed plans. We also affirm the need to diversify sources of income and the need to exert more efforts in this respect. It is also necessary to look into ways of benefiting from alternative energy resources and to seek ways of achieving food security as much as possible,” His Majesty said.

His Majesty affirmed that the cooperation with the world is in high interest of the Sultanate as well as a contribution to establish security and welfare in various parts of the world.

His Majesty also said that the Sultanate’s joining various international and regional groupings aims at positively contributing to all efforts which bring about welfare for all of humanity in an effective manner. His Majesty welcomed Their Majesties and Highnesses, leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council at the forthcoming summit scheduled to be held in Muscat, and prayed to the Almighty to make this gathering a success and grant the Council’s march a progress.

The following is the full text of His Majesty the Sultan’s Speech before the convening of the Annual Session of the Council of Oman: Praise be to God for his great and abundant blessings and peace be upon the seal of his messengers and Prophets (peace be upon him), and upon his family, companions and followers,

Honorable Members of the Council of Oman,

Dear Citizens,

It is a blessing of God that deserves our many thanks and appreciation that we meet a new year after year in this blessed Council, through which we look forward - with full confidence and hope - to realizing more achievements for a stable and secure Oman, with God’s assistance and guidance.

Honorable Members of the Council of Oman,

Dear Citizens,

Giving attention to human resources, including the provision of the various tools required to enhance their performance, incentives to develop their capabilities, diversifying their creative talents and to improving their scientific and practical qualifications, is the basis of real development and the cornerstone in its structure which is based on solid foundations.

The human element is the maker of a renaissance and the builder of a civilization.

Therefore, we are sparing no effort and will continue to spare no effort in order to provide our human resources all the help they will need to develop, hone and train. We will also provide educational opportunities for them in order that they may acquire useful knowledge, the required experience and the necessary technical skills that will be needed in the labor market and as are required by the sustainable development programs in various fields.

Honorable Members of the Council of Oman,

Dear Citizens,

We have always emphasized the importance of learning and knowledge and we have always been open to the adoption of new developments in this field.

Information technology and communications have now become the main elements that move forward the development process in this third millennium; therefore, we have accorded our attention to finding a national strategy to develop the skills and abilities of citizens in this domain with an aim of further developing e-government services. We are closely following the important steps which we have taken in this regard. We call upon all government institutions to speedily enhance their performance, and to facilitate their services, by applying digital technology in order to usher the Sultanate into the constantly evolving spheres for applying knowledge.

Honorable Members of the Council of Oman,

Dear Citizens,

Good government performance in different sectors, serving the country and citizens with honesty and dedication and putting public interest over all other considerations are the necessary pillars for any sustainable development.

While we commend the government’s performance during the past period, we at the same time wish to stress the need for a constant revision of the State’s administrative system. This will ensure that the best and most successful means that lead to the simplification and facilitation of procedures are followed, thus expediting the decision making process in the interest of citizens and residents who are contributing to the service of Oman and assisting in its building.

Here, it is worth noting that the government’s performance in laying down the groundwork for sustainable development relies on those carrying out their duties, as well as on their supervisors. This places a huge responsibility on the shoulders of employees who are entrusted with the work in different government sectors. If their work is carried out in an honest manner and with a spirit of responsibility, away from personal interests, then they would be happy and so would be their country. But if they stray from the right path and consider the job as a means to achieving personal gains, influence and power and they fail in carrying out their duties in complete honesty and dedication, they should be held accountable and legal procedures should be taken against them in accordance with the principles of justice upon which we have laid down the pillars of rule.

In accordance with these pillars, we are required not to allow anyone to be above law and order, or to let anyone unlawfully affect the interests of our people as guaranteed by the State as well as the interest of the community which is protected by legislation and supported by our laws and regulations.

Therefore, we emphasize that the issue of enforcement of justice is imperative and inevitable, and that our monitoring apparatus is alert and dedicated to carrying out their duties and responsibilities in order to safeguard the country’s achievements.

Honorable Members of the Council of Oman,

Dear Citizens,

We have followed with concern the economic situation currently being witnessed by the world and the turmoil prevailing in the international arena due to these circumstances. We would like to point out that the policies adopted by our government in recent years have contributed, praise be to God, to avert the effects of this situation affecting our economy.

In this regard we confirm the continuation of the development and building policies in accordance with the endorsed plans. We also affirm the need to diversify sources of income and the need to exert more efforts in this respect. It is also necessary to look into ways of benefiting from alternative energy resources and to seek ways of achieving food security as much as possible.

In this regard we have given our orders to the authorities concerned to set up appropriate plans.

Honorable Members of the Council of Oman,

Dear Citizens,

We currently live in a world of overlapping policies and interests but our international cooperation is in line with the Sultanate’s higher interests and in line with our contribution to the establishment of world security and prosperity. Thanks to these policies, our country has acquired the respect and appreciation of the international community.

Cooperation and exchange of benefits and interests among nations in an atmosphere of harmony and peace is a vital issue that we should all relentlessly pursue with diligence and dedication for the sake of the welfare of humanity, its security and prosperity. We in the Sultanate constantly put this issue before our eyes.

We have joined various international and regional groupings with a view to positively contributing to all efforts which bring about welfare for all of humanity in an effective manner. On this occasion, we take the opportunity of the convening of the 29th Summit of Their Majesties and Highnesses, leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council, scheduled to be held in Muscat soon, to welcome our brothers to their second homeland as honorable guests and pray to the Almighty to make this brotherly gathering a success, and to grant the GCC further well-being and progress.

With the name and praise of God we began, and with the same we conclude, may God ordain guidance and wisdom for us in all our deeds and may God fulfill our hopes. You are the hearer and the one who responds to our prayers.

May God grant you success and may God’s peace and blessings be upon you.

The annual session of the Council of Oman was attended by a number of Their Highnesses, chairmen of the State Council and Majlis A’Shura, the ministers, advisers, commanders of armed forces, Royal Oman Police, senior military and civil officers, Their Excellencies, members of the State Council and Majlis A’Shura, heads of the diplomatic missions in the Sultanate, a number of the country’s sheikhs and dignitaries, editors-in-chief of Oman News Agency (ONA), local newspapers, as well as, editors-in-chief and representative of Arab and foreign media.

The Council of Oman was established as per the Royal Decree No.86/97 issued on December 16, 1997. It comprises the State Council and Majlis A’Shura which the basic law of the state defines the prerogatives of each of them, their terms, systems of work, the number of members, the requirements that should be met by them, method of selecting or appointing them, requirements of their dismissal and other regulatory terms.