Saudi Human Rights Commission to modernize, be granted more powers, say sources 

The Saudi Human Rights Commision (SHRC) will undergo a serious modernization effort and be granted more powers, according to a government source. (Reuters)
Updated 01 September 2019

Saudi Human Rights Commission to modernize, be granted more powers, say sources 

  • Former Saudi information minister Awad Al-Awad was appointed by royal decree to head the SHRC on Friday
  • Saudi government determined to reinforce role of commission in accordance with highest standards

RIYADH: The Saudi Human Rights Commission (HRC) will undergo serious modernization and be granted more powers, a knowledgeable government source within the commission has told Arab News. 

“The aim is to empower HRC so that the human rights file and practices are in line with all the progress and reform in the Kingdom under Vision 2030, and also in line with best possible practices,” the source said. 

“Procedural reasons” were responsible for 90 percent of what the source described as “negative aspects” relating to human rights issues in the Kingdom, he said.

These procedural errors would “rapidly and carefully be corrected through the work of the Human Rights Commision during the next period. 

“The aim will be to close any gaps or loopholes in laws and legislation, and stop any negative exploitation of the bureaucracy in a way that goes against the Kingdom’s ambitious vision when it comes to human rights.” 

The source said the Saudi government was determined to reinforce the role of the Human Rights Commission in accordance with the highest standards. “This will be achieved through moving the laws and authorities related to the human rights file to the desired level that matches the Kingdom’s prestige and reputation,” he said. 

In a government reshuffle last week, former Saudi information minister Awwad Alawad was appointed by royal decree to head the HRC.

Alawad, who is also Saudi Arabia’s former Ambassador to Germany, has been a Royal Court adviser since he was relieved of his duties as information minister late last year.


Heba Qadi, Saudi executive

Heba Qadi
Updated 29 sec ago

Heba Qadi, Saudi executive

  • Qadi started her career at Al-Rajhi Bank from 2007 to 2009 as a relationship manager
  • Qadi is an active writer, and was a columnist for Makkah newspaper for years

Heba Qadi is co-founder and general manager of the Update Idea Generator Co., a Jeddah-based management consulting company founded in 2016.
She has years of experience with the private and public sectors. She was the main speaker at a discussion event in Jeddah on Sunday titled “Writing with Colored Ink,” organized by the Saudi Culture and Art Society.
The discussion was directed by Dr. Iman Ashgar, a member of the society’s board. Qadi discussed writing as a profession and the lines between creativity and realism.
She received her bachelor’s degree in English from Umm Al-Qura University in Makkah. She later obtained her Executive Master of Business Administration from Hult International Business School in the US.
Qadi started her career at Al-Rajhi Bank from 2007 to 2009 as a relationship manager. In 2009, she moved to the National Commercial Bank as a branch manager until 2010. From 2010 to 2012, Qadi was an English teacher at King Abdul Aziz University.
She is an active writer, and was a columnist for Makkah newspaper for years. She is also a life coach and motivational speaker.
Qadi has participated in many conferences, and has spoken at numerous universities such as Effat, Umm Al-Qura, King Abdul Aziz and Al-Battarjee Medical College. She has spoken at TEDx, a local gathering where live TED-like talks and performances are shared with the community, and at CYC, an annual forum that highlights job opportunities for Saudi youth. Her Twitter handle is @HebaKadi.