The Political View of the MB Moderate Reformists in the Mauritanian Elections
The coup of the 3rd August 2005 opened horizons of change in front of the Mauritanians; so their hopes for involvement in the public affairs were revived again; they gathered in different forms to call for reform and seek change and a new situation that may mends turmoil of the past and my bode with a future progress.
The moderate reformists were not away from that; the legalization right was available for all except them; however their participation in the public life was not restricted to the form of a party structure which they called for as their right; they condemned being excluded under the claim that they are illegitimate, refusing to make it a justification for withdrawing from participation.
All convened and formed an initiative that arranged the stances, explained the idea and means and provide others with contacts and interactions in a good dialogue and wise discourse.
In this initiative, we received many people; curious journalists, political interviewers and also many supporters who were yearning for the slogan and want to inquire about it; so we met them, and we explained and clarified every thing.
However, we believed that if we left all these interpretations and explanations without documentation, they may be prone to perversions; so we thought it would be better to document these clarifications in a credited document in order to explain the political views to avoid any confusion.
First: General Diagnosis
1-At the national level
Undoubtedly, post-colonial Mauritania emerged lacking any help from its fellow countries and in an atmosphere of aggravation, in which it was unable to produce the necessities of challenge; as a result it had to suffer challenges greater than expected, and its views became disturbed between the necessities of citizenship and sovereignty on the one hand, and the fierce influence of the foreigner powers who exploited the heedlessness of Arab fellow countries on the other hand; this awful influence remained present in several periods of the country’s history, offering many elites who were the best messengers to reflect their ideas which were resisted by our ancestors in both positive and rejectionist levels.
Monism dominated the country and was represented in the single-party regime during the civil rule. Then, the military came to power to demolish the last traces of pluralism allowed by the civil authority; yet mistakes and violations accumulated since 1984, demolishing the prestige of country and its position, where corruptors raced for looting whatever they can find; thereupon the savage liberalism became fierce, corruption ventured then a stereotyped behavior dominated every thing; meanwhile the tool of democracy became the best means for establishing yranny.
Tribal ethnic and regional conflicts became an inevitable fate, and a rotten smell of barbarism emanated in the events of 1989 that resulted in grievous death casualties and cutting off all ties between Mauritanians in their homeland; add to this the full fledged tragedy that Mauritanians was exposed to in Senegal.
The unity of the country was torn down due to these violations which broadened defects in the country; this was embodied in sectarianism, arrogance, racism and rejecting every thing that religion calls for like cohesion and equality. Declaring our refusal to all this, the society isn’t to be blamed; the blme is on some politicians who became silent or supported this dead point in history.
The national country has never been free- throughout its history- of hardships of prisons and confiscation of freedoms, the fiercest of which were in the last regime; this requires that the society advances towards sealing a national code of honor that incriminates confiscation of rights, public freedoms, exercising torture and bans exclusion and rejects all violations against human dignity. Accordingly, the status quo before the coup of the 3rd of August had many features that can be outlined as follows:
1) A blockage in political horizons and changing the democratic process into something ceremonial.
2) A horrific economic deficit that forced the country to be categorized as one of the poorest countries.
3) A tangible deterioration in social life, change of values to materialistic means, while the most dangerous deviation was in manners and public behavior.
4. The deterioration in status quo of education and a retreat in the acquisitions of the national identity, especially those related to the position of Islamic education, Arabic language and other national languages in the educational curricula, changing the weekend to Sunday and targeting institutions in society including the mosques and other considerable symbols.
Regarding the judiciary, it was affiliated to the executive authority and the administration of the state security tightens its grip over it, aand its rulings were determined through bribes.
Concerning the foreign relations, they were, during the last twenty years, under moods and whims and became a field of experimentation where only submissive figures were chosen to carry out the dictates of tyrants; as a result, the relations with neighboring countries deteriorated and were sacrificed for individual whims; also as a result, the country appeared to be aimless and as if it is going astray.
When the regime found itself isolated and targeted, it did not take the initiative to reform the disorder in the domestic files and the ties of the people and the region, and mainstrem international relations; however, it hurried to establishing relations with the Zionist entity because it thought that it would be the shortest way for protection; so, it sacrificed the feelings of its people, considering it the shortest ways of protection and the strongest barriers of attack; it sacrificed the feelings of its people, interests of its country and its duty towards its family and nation; this was actually a mere loss and shame.
2) On Regional and International Level
The Current status quo on both levels is as follows:
1. Democracy is reinforced in most countries in the region, especially in the neighboring countries, where power was circulated peacefully - wholly or partly - and the ballot boxes appeared on programs and results, the freedoms of expression, media and the publication especially were reinforced, and the policy of exclusion retreated and all national powers were recognized.
2. Bilateral ties clearly returned to the diplomatic arena in the region between Morocco and Algeria including the return of conflict and tension in the Sahara.
3. The retreat of some regional conflicts as the case in Niger, Mali and Senegal and the emergence of other severer conflicts, especially in Cote d’Ivoire.
4. The ongoing security tension in the joint triangle with Mali and Algeria due to the presence of groups of violence, smuggling gangs and aspirations of big powers.
This tension extended to our lands when a crime was perpetrated against a battalion from the national army.
5) The emergence of the issue of reform and democracy in the Arab world; some Arab countries has taken decent steps in this path however they did not meet the demands of peoples and did not stop the US blackmail and pressures.
6. Establishing the reality of the Zionist occupation, the spread of its influences and its expansion in the region despite continuing resistance, and the wide encouragement of Zionist project and culture.
7. The occupation of Iraq and the disorder that plagued the region and paved the way for the imperialist hegemony that uses the most brutal ways in quelling.
8. The retreat in the aspects of participation in the international system, and endangering the principle of the state sovereignty under the US demands and its various pressures.
Why Moderate and Reformist?
This movement is known as the Islamic trend or the Islamic movement, and it does not hide this honor to adopt this choice nor is it hesitant in this choice....
However, the circumstances of propaganda created confusion at some peoples and caused untrue claims. Besides, there is a huge difference that happened in the Islamic schools all over the world in the last years. So, we started to call ourselves as reformist and that reform becomes our target; add to this that we are moderate. Our moderateness follows gradual policies. This assures our graduation in methods and accumulation in the steps of reform; our modernity refutes any strictness in any method and we renounced all methods of violence, extremism and fanaticism.
Second: Constants and a General Aims
This view emerges from the belief in God the One, Only One and the final message that declares to humanity that it reached maturity and responsibility to advance and renew the role related to original absolutes in accordance to the needs of time yet seeking the guidance from the ancestors, the great production of the nation in juristic, mental behavioral schools in mere moderation away from exaggeration and forseeking leniency in thought, behavior and exercise and recognizing the right of disagreement and difference.
Also, this view emerges from the belief in a single and unified Mauritanian society in religion, doctrine and the rights of citizenship and considers the ethnic multiplicity as a rich cultural aspect that qualifies the country for its regional role and allows it the continental and international expansion.
Our Starting Points in Brief:
The Islamic reference: where we start from the committing Islamic origins; the Qur’an and the Sunna; we deviate not from and we abide by their judgments then we establish on the heritage of the nation and its clerics and seek the guidance of these references and believe that the interpretative judgment based on apprehended revelation that aims for the common interests is the mechanism of reform in religion and to keep pace with all ages and places.
The National Affilition: This means that we belong to Mauritania where we are brought up, brag for this affilition, and we are ready to defend it with all means to keep its security...patriotism according to us is a starting point, a character, and aim and according to the necessities of this affiliation, we should protect the national unity, for all races, sects and to renounce all racial calls.
The Democratic Option: our accepting democracy, pluralism, and peaceful circulation for power is a strategic option; however, we renounce tyranny and its justifications, as well as monism. We consider democracy with all its aspects including freedom, competition, and transparency as a guarantee for development and progress.
Mauritania is according to us a country of Islamic heritage, and its existence is related to this fact, and its role is established on is, as well. Its future is commissioned to prove this fact; therefore it is a part from the Muslim nation according it its geographical place, and its civilization, and it is a part of the Arab world according to its culture, affiliation and geography. The Arab identity is clear in the features of this country.
Mauritania belongs to the African entity, because its natives are Africans, it is located in Africa in addition to the fact that the African component of the country including race, linguage and customs are developing and differing.
It is a human as it believes in its universal role, the essence of mankind who is a dignified creature and that every creature in the world is submitting to him.
The Priorities of Reform:
The proprieties of reformation are- according to us- based on a set of features and optionss that establish for later details and the coming elections:
In the legal and political field:
Due to the fact that Islam as reference is crystal clear in the constitution of the country while cherishing the articles in the suggested constitutional amendments, especially those related to the circulation of power, breaking monopoly yet there are many important steps, the most prominent among which are:
1) Preserving the independence of law through suitable procedures like: Stating the election of the president, members in the Supreme Judicial Council and the judges of the Supreme Court.
2) Reviewing the law of the parties so that its text is clear regarding the system of giving licenses.
3) Pushing up the activities of the national committee for the reformation of press sector and amending its law towards more freedom.
4) Protecting the institutions of the civil society through amending the law of societies, approbating the system of statement and stipulating on preservation against the attacks of power.
5) Amending the election law and related roles in order to guarantee a balanced representation on both relative and geographical levels in order to give the emigrant citizens living abroad the right to vote in the legislative elections and the presidential elections
7) Enacting laws to protect human rights, and to prevent exploiting or undermining them.
8) To organize the return of Mauritanians living abroad and giving them their rights through Justice.
9) Establishing a national committee for frank debate and for reconciliation that would manage to shed light over the previous violations of human rights, according to the codes of amnesty, mutual understanding and to establish a new position where justice has the upper hand and to put a mechanism for the circulation of power, guarantee freedoms for all trends pledged by all and every citizen must be committed to them.
10) To establish a national watchdog for transparency that handles censorship and supervision in the fields of public property and to enact laws for combating financial and administrative corruption.
11) To recognize –wholly- the right of moderate reformists and all other powers in forming their legal and political frames.
Our vision is based on the necessity to maintain a balanced firm development that would be faultless, rational and which is based on the aspects of economic freedoms committed to legal measures, manners, common weal in order to avoid risks, guarantees the rationalization of resources along with maintaining justice in allocating wealth to the poor, needy people and those who have low income.
In order to attain these goals, the aforesaid view is accordant to endeavors to make good use of the advantages of free-economy, avoiding its disadvantages through the active interference of the state in certain cases to guarantee the organization of economic life, maintain just competition and equal opportunities among all citizens, therefore our concerns are attributed to the following:
1. To respect the concept of individual property
2. Encouraging the private sector through paving the way for the private initiative and give incentives to all private activists.
3. To guarantee a real and transparent competition among economists.
4. Active intervention to fill the deficit in all fields that do not attract the private sector and to guarantee the freedom of market, justice, and the well-monitoring of all resources.
5. Combating corruption, bribery, misappropriation and the bad facilitation of the public fund and that could be carried out through giving encouraging incentives, approbation of fierce punishment on violators.
6. Observing prices in order to protect the consumer, the importer, and the producer in a balanced way. Salaries should be accordant with prices to protect individuals with low and fixed incomes.
7. Encouraging a national industry to exploit the raw materials in the country in order provide jobs and establish a basis for productive industry.
8. Supporting the traditional industries and merging them in the national economy.
9. Reviewing the laws of privatization in order to:
- To be economically justifying for the financial status of the foundations under privatization.
- To be committed to a studied program that seeks the common weal in the present and the past and to take into consideration the economic and social dimensions of all these operations.
- To exclude vital fields like water, power and other things while the state should keep suitable and private allocations in vital fields.
- To devise cash policies that would raise the value of currency, to develop and expand the scope of the Islamic banking transactions
- To enhance censorship on the resources of the country and to further just conventions with companies, investors and foreigners investors.
- To curb the ongoing anarchy in search and excavation for minerals in addition to devising mechanisms to avoid any misapprehension in related conventions.
- To coordinate with neighboring and friendly countries to enhance negotiations.
- To devise an effective real-estate policy that includes the citizens right to own lands, to the economic needs for the country and the priorities of development.
- To devise an effective agricultural policy to maintain self-sufficiency in the near future.
- To devise an immediate reform for the sector of fishing in a way that guarantees a vital renewal to the wealth, establishing industries in the field of marine products, to reinforce the regional and international cooperation that guarantees the interests of the country.
- Expanding centralism in the development fields, caring for the countryside and establishing projects that guarantee improvement and settlement conditions.
- To care for the animal stock wealth and laying down policies to protect it and how to benefit from it.
- To set enough guarantees for using oil, and to rely on clear transparency mechanisms to facilitate establishing the fund of oil revenues for the coming generations.
- To devise fair and balanced policy in the field of taxes and collecting them.
- To encourage the regional economic cooperation and support the concerned efforts to establish economic blocs in the Arab Islamic and African arenas.
- To encourage a cautious openness to the world economy to guarantee benefitting from the advantages of the economic globalization along with a concern for avoiding the disadvantages
- Reviewing the status of mines in general and iron especially in order to guaranteeing a transparent monitoring for them and make good use of them.
- To develop the sector of land, marine and air transport in order to guarantee its quality and to curb any hegemony and monopoly.
- In the Social Field
- Our priorities in this field are:
1- Eradicating all practices and traces of slavery and make use of all means to achieve this.
2- Devising policies for improving the status of the woman and enabling her to participate in all the walks of life in the society and the country in addition to helping her in her role in the family and in a way that maintains integration in the society.
3- Adopting transparent dynamic policy to curb poverty and unemployment.
4- Ther should be transparency and justice in enrolling employees in both public and private sectors.
5- Establishing a fund for the unemployed in a way that guarantees their productivity and taking into consideration requalifying them.
6- -To establish a national fund for collecting and distributing Zakat.
7-To give the chance to charities to contribute to eradicating poverty and consolidating development .
8- To curb chaos, cheating in the health field and applying clear and transparent regulations for opening clinics and importing medicines.
9-To expand the health and pharmaceutical coverage and put mechanisms to guarantee giving the health services in a good way along with developing the health insurance policies.
10- To support associations, and encourage their activities in order to be beneficial for the labor sector
11-To devise measures and policies to improve the conditions of children, to protect them socially and culturally, and provide them with all suitable conditions to guarantee familial care along with entertainment.
12-To protect public manners, and guide the society towards the best original values.
13-To curb the presence of slum districts in order to eradicate them and put effective housing policies.
14-To develop measures for protecting the environment and the activate the rule of law.
15-To encourage the non-governmental organizations especially watchdogs monitoring prices, materials, and consumer societies.
In the fields of culture and education
In this field, we mention the following priorities
1-To review the educational programs and status quo in order to include the following topics:
- To preserve the Islamic identity and constants
- To consolidate the position of Arabic and other national languages: Pulaar, Soninke and Wolof.
- To know other international languages and to consolidate the position of sciences and technologies.
- To expand the scope of higher education and scientific research.
- To expand of the network of education all over the country along with improving its positions and those who are in charge.
2-To support mosques and Mahazir economically and materially in addition to encourage the education of the Mahazir in addition to developing it to make use from the mecahisms of the age.
3-To improve the status of Imams, and preachers in addition to give freedom of preaching.
4-To support culture, encourage arts and all creative arts
5-To protect the Mauritanian heritage and develop the historical and touristic places
6-To show due care to the activities of youth and students in addition to making them participate in the public affairs
7-To show due care to sports and encourage the various kinds of sports
In Security and Military Fields
Undoubtedly, protecting the homeland, keeping its sovereignty, eradicating anarchy, and consolidating the role of the military foundation require the following:
1) To stop politicizing the army and to consider it a national republican foundation that follows the political decisions without dominating it. It is necessary to keep it as a sign of the national unity, and give the opportunity to every citizen to enroll in it regardless of race, religion and tribal affiliations.
2) To develop the abilities of the army and encourage soldiers spiritually in order to sacrifice for the homeland
3) To adopt military values based on the culture and heritage of the nation
4) To keep the military skills, to care for the military rehabilitation, and to establish institutions for military and strategic foundations.
5) To improve the conditions of the armed forces and security forces in order to be qualified to their jobs.
6) To restore the balance between the military and security institutions.
7) To develop and update the security services in order to serve the republic and freedoms.
8) Providing a cultural, democratic and moral rehabilitation for those who work in the security and police.
Mauritania enjoys a strategic location among the Arab and African world and its culture qualifies it to assume an integrated role. In the past, it was able to play diplomatic roles that were peerless for a newly established country; however lately it suffered from a retreat on both the international and diplomatic roles; so, activating its roles in this field is necessary; the following points may lead to this:
1- To cherish the location of Mauritania among the Arab Muslim African world
2- To activate the Union of the Arab Meghrib
3- To activate the role of Mauritania in the Arab league
4- To return to the CEDEC
5- To activate the role of Mauritania in the African Union
6- To develop ties with Europe because it is a key ally to the country
7- To develop ties with USA without any violations to the sovereignty
8- To reinforce the relations with all development partners and countries all over the world
9- To support the Palestinian people in their legal resistance and to help them to restore their rights
10- To reject the US and British occupation of Iraq and to support its legal resistance
11- To support all oppressed Muslim people
12- To support policies concerned with maintaining peace, tolerance and fighting violence and aggression.
13- To encourage the reformist initiatives in solving regional and international problems.
14- To severe all ties with the Zionist entity which defamed the country and offended it before its people.
To sum up, these are some of our views; they are basics on which we will add more developments; we offer it to the public as pledge that we will implement all the details therein.
We do not claim the perfection, because these are just efforts and views whose bases are firm and unchangeable. Any comment criticism or amendment add to the perfection of this progect.
We ask Allah to guide us to the true path
Follow-up and contact committee of the moderate reformists
Nouakchott 2nd February 2006