Afrasianet - Following is the full English translation of the His Majesty King Abdullah’s Speech from the Throne during the inauguration of the fourth ordinary session of the 18th Parliament on Sunday:
“In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful,
Prayers and peace be upon our Prophet Mohammad,
Peace, God’s mercy and blessings be upon you,
In the name of God, and with His blessings, we inaugurate the fourth ordinary session of the 18th Parliament. It is an ordinary session taking place in extraordinary times, which require transparency and courage, and hard work and achievement in equal measure.
I speak to you today from the very podium where I vowed, 20 years ago, to preserve the Constitution and to remain loyal to the nation. Al Hussein, may his soul rest in peace, pledged me for this nation, and I have only ever been its loyal servant.
I salute every Jordanian man and woman who have contributed to the nation’s progress and development, each from their post. I especially salute my brothers and sisters in arms, who carry the badge we all hold dear, at the Jordan Armed Forces-Arab Army and security agencies, active and retired. To them, we express our full appreciation and pride.
Jordan has moved steadily forward, maintaining its steadfast positions. We have made reform and the consolidation of the democratisation process a consistent approach. Our national positions on the Palestinian cause are steadfast, supporting our Palestinian brethren to establish their independent state on the June 4, 1967 lines, with East Jerusalem as its capital. There will be no compromise on safeguarding Islamic and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, despite increasing dangers and threats.
I hereby call on Muslims and Christians to step up the protection of these holy sites, and support us in safeguarding them and ensuring the preservation of their legal status. Today, I also announce the expiration of the Peace Treaty annexes on Al Ghamr and Baqura and the imposition of our full sovereignty over every inch of those lands.
I am not here today to list achievements, nor to extend platitudes, when I see the concern in the eyes of my fellow Jordanians. I see it in the eyes of a father who wants to put bread on the table, the unemployed young man worried about his future, and military and civilian pensioners.
In response to many questions, I say, I know and feel with every one of my dear, fellow Jordanians. Every one of you has a family to provide for, and I am responsible for an entire nation.
We are all aware that the crises surrounding us have cast a shadow over Jordan in various aspects of life, especially the economy. We have paid a heavy price because of our historical positions. We have undertaken bold reforms, even in the most difficult of circumstances, and have demonstrated to the world, time and again, that Jordan, whatever the challenges, does not know the impossible.
Jordanians, as always, have stood firm safeguarding their homeland and its achievements, for Jordanians do not back down in the face of adversity; they endure and persevere, having inherited the spirit of resolve and dedication, generation after generation.
I know that today, many are asking where we are headed. To them I say Jordan is moving steadily forward. The most difficult reforms are behind us, and the promising future lies ahead. We are marching confidently towards that future to realise the aspirations of the people of this nation.
Last month, the government presented an economic programme, to be implemented in phases and along four pillars, aimed at reviewing salaries and wages, stimulating the economy and incentivising investments, improving the quality of services provided to citizens, and administrative reform and public finance.
The government has launched the programme’s first package, and will announce other detailed packages, including a review of regulations and legislation related to taxes and customs, in order to facilitate business and reduce the burden on citizens.
Therefore, I hereby direct the government to work vigorously and efficiently to take further bold measures to advance the national economy. But today, no government can proceed on the path of reform and achievement without a supportive legislative power, an impartial judiciary, an active private sector, and citizens confident in themselves and in the future of their country.
No venue is more appropriate than this one here to urge the three branches of government to carry out their duties. Today, you are all responsible, and tomorrow, you are all accountable. We all have no choice but to take action and achieve results.
I do not address you today fearing for our nation. I speak to you out of my faith in our country and in you, and with a clear vision of the opportunities before us. Our youth are qualified; our sectors are promising; investors are keen; and the world believes in Jordan and its potential.
Let us arise to build a new reality in which growth can be doubled, creating thousands of opportunities for every aspiring Jordanian — for those who work and persevere, for those who have hope, for those with infinite ambitions, for those who make something out of nothing and do not expect results without putting in the effort. Our awakening has no place for those who surrender to pessimism and gloom.
We derive our optimism and determination from our people. May God grant us all success and pave our way towards achievement and good deeds.
Peace, God’s mercy and blessings be upon you.”