Saturday, November 26, 2005
All eyes are on Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI) today as the election to its board of directors begins with 17 women contesting alongside 54 male candidates — for the first time in the history of Saudi Arabia.
Women’s participation in the elections has grabbed attention worldwide amid reports that some female candidates might surprise everyone by winning. In an unprecedented move, Saudi authorities gave the green light last September for women to run in the chamber elections.
True, it is only a Chamber of Commerce election. But Sabbah, with whom I only occasionally see eye-to-eye, thinks something is better than nothing:
Even if all women candidates lose the election, the biggest winner will still be the principle that allowed them to contest side by side men.