OUTLOOK — By Saif Al Abri — Many Omani families live in crumbled houses with cracked roofs and worn-out doors that could barely withstand heavy rains and powerful winds. Other families live in the open and sleep on mats with only the sky to shelter them. On the other side, you are struck with wonder seeing those who lead extravagant life, spend lavishly on all sorts of entertainment and devour the most delicious of food, as though they were born with golden spoons in their mouths.
It is ironic to find such destitute families in the time of the Blessed Renaissance. More surprising is the people’s indifference towards the ubiquitous idiom: ‘My uncle’s money, I don’t worry’ which has become the guiding principle for the mischievous and the mantra they repeat every now and again. As soon as they hear of any such news the media people scramble to unravel the concealed truth. Also non-existent are the officials who are supposed to look after the interests of the people and protect them. Officials in the respective wilayat, from the governorate office to the wali office, from the members of the Shura Council to those of the State Council and the relevant development sectors, are all required to find solutions to the problem of the underprivileged by devising plans to extract them from this circle of poverty.
The government has long ago attached priority to the citizens’ well-being in all its development plans and the officials responsible for realising these goals in different wilayats of the Sultanate have to do their part, as well.
It is high time the offices of walis and governorates and the wilayat representatives in the twin Majlises as well as the municipal councils played a better role in easing the citizens’ woes. This can be achieved through inspection visits that cover all villages in the respective wilayats, the officials have to access the needy people in their locations because of the fact that their self-esteem prevents them from approaching authorities to seek help from the officials.
It is well-known that the job of those officials is not confined to working at office and attending ceremonies here and there just to have the honour of flanking an influential chief guest at a gala function, which by no means falls within the scope of their official jobs.
There is a great necessity to improve the role of the authorities in all governorates and wilayats because the honorary position is no more useful to the citizens who have got fed up with repeated promises. What they are in need of are tangible achievements that alleviate their suffering and improve their well-being.
The citizens are just longing to see the officials performing the duties entrusted to them so that everyone attains the rights and services to which they are entitled to, and nothing more than that. We hope the municipal councils, which are expected to be formed within a short time, cater to the needs of the citizens far and near.