[This statement was originally published by The National Assembly Party NAAS on 23 September 2020.]
We hereby announce the establishment of the National Assembly Party, which aims to institute democracy as a form of government in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
This declaration comes at a time of a blocked political horizon; evident by an escalation of the state’s increasing use of violence and repression, mounting numbers of political arrests and assassinations, aggressive policies against other states in the region, enforced disappearances and violent displacement of people, security forces surveillance and intrusion on public and private spaces, the absence of an independent judiciary, the government’s monopoly over the media and muzzling of public opinion, the hollowing out of civil society, rising levels of unemployment, particularly among young women and men, and the imposition of unjust taxes and fines without a public oversight, along with the squandering of the state’s resources.
By establishing the party we are keen to prevent the country from sliding into unrest, violence, civil or regional wars. We seek to lay a foundation for a peaceful political change that aims first and foremost to protect human rights and development, and to reject exploitation of our Islamic religion for repressive or political means, while guaranteeing the freedom of belief for all, preserving the beneficial achievements and institutions of our society, protecting the country’s security and unity, and ensuring its prosperity.
We believe that the people are the source of power. This means that every adult person has the right to stand as a candidate and choose who will represent them in a wholly elected parliament, that holds legislative power and oversight over the performance of the state’s executive institutions. This means a separation of the three powers of state – legislative, judicial and executive – with constitutional safeguards, to guarantee their independence and ensure they cannot be monopolized or influenced in favor of any entity or a person.
We aspire to secure justice for each person, without discrimination, and to ensure equality among citizens, and to set up an independent, fair judiciary, that refers to a constitution of a public consensus, to uphold people’s rights and interests, and ensure that the state duly complies with its international and regional commitments.
We regard all of the state’s resources as property of the people. We believe wealth should be equitably distributed, without partiality towards persons or regions. We believe resources should not be spent without oversight by the people’s representatives. There has to be transparency, and the establishing of a strong economy that protects the state’s natural resources, ensures economic diversity and protects vulnerable groups; one that provides education, health and all social services without discrimination, and abolishes unfair policies that discriminate against migrant workers. We will also work to draft effective laws to combat corruption, illicit wealth and abuse of power.
We uphold human rights and the guarantee of freedoms for all without discrimination, and the rights to free speech and assembly and to form independent civil society associations. We believe in protecting pluralism by guaranteeing the rights of all to political and cultural affiliations, and we seek to promote women’s rights and combat discrimination against marginalized groups.
Finally, we aim to strengthen the state’s cooperation with the world at large, globally and regionally, in ways that serve the interests of the people, to save the environment and strengthen mechanisms in compliance with international standards; and to engage in diplomacy and cooperation with international institutions to resolve external disputes, while respecting the sovereignty of states and supporting their quest for democracy.
6 Safar 1442 / 23 September 2020
On behalf of the founders
Madawi Al-Rasheed, Ahmed Almshikhs, Dr. Saeed al-Ghamdi, Yahya Assiri, Dr. Abdullah Aloudah, Omar Al-Zahrani