Saudi Arabia said Monday it would hold partial municipal elections within a year, in the first ever national polls in the kingdom.
"The Saudi cabinet decided at its session today to broaden citizens' participation in running local affairs through elections. This will be done by activating municipal councils ... electing half the members of each council," the official Saudi Press Agency reported.
"The cabinet said the sides concerned should complete measures (to conduct the polls) within a maximum of one year," the news agency added.
It said the decision to hold nationwide municipal polls was in keeping with the policy advocated by Saudi King Fahd and Crown Prince Abdullah to "press ahead on the path of political and administrative reform."
The announcement said the elections would be held on the basis of a 1975 municipal council statute which provided for the election of municipal bodies but was never implemented, although it was never revoked either.
The partial municipal polls will mark the first national elections in Saudi Arabia. (Albawaba.com)
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