The Shoura Council recommended to the government on Monday that it take necessary measures to allow Saudi women to vote in municipal elections under Islamic law.
The decision was taken unanimously by members of the council, which also discussed the annual report of the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs during its 38th regular session, chaired by the Shoura Chairman Abdullah Al-Asheikh in Riyadh on Sunday.
Speaking to reporters, Shoura Council Secretary-General Muhammad Al-Ghamdi said the house took the decision when the council’s committee on housing, water and public services tabled its comments on the report, which covered the fiscal year 1427/1428 AH.
Although the members strongly recommended women participate in the municipal elections, Al-Ghamdi explained that the house insisted that the franchise should only be exercised by women in line with Islamic regulations.
In the upcoming municipal elections in the Kingdom, women are not allowed either to vote or to contest the polls.
“This was a general recommendation,” Reuters news agency quoted Mohammed Almuhanna, media spokesman for the Shoura Council, as saying. “It has nothing to do with the current elections but is rather a recommendation for future elections.”
Hundreds of women around the Kingdom have joined an online campaign called Baladi, Arabic for “My Country”, in protest at their exclusion from the municipal elections.
Full Article: Shoura favors women voting – Arab News.