Written By: Elena White
Article Date: May 7, 2012 - 7:35:59 PM
Following a decision made last month by President Abdu Rabbo Mansour Hadi to out an end to all government financial subventions towards Yemen’s tribal leaders, Prime Minister Mohamed Salem Basendwa solemnly announced that he would personally prevent the YER13 billion ($60 million) which the state budget provisioned for in “tribal remuneration.”
It is former President Ali Abdullah Saleh who famously instated a “patronage system” where tribal leaders would receive state compensations in exchange for their loyalties and obedience to the central government.
With its economy in tatters, Yemen has now to free itself from this heavy burden or economists warned, the country will not be able to pull through.
While in Taiz, the Premier defiantly told his audience in Liberty Square,“we will not pay the YR13 billion to sheikhs. The state budget should be directed to serve all the Yemeni people and there should not be provisions aimed at special people or groups."
The decision which is already raising some angry tribal eyebrows comes as Yemen is gripped in yet another political arm wrestling match as former President Saleh’s loyalists continue to accuse the coalition government of serving the interests of al-Ahmar’s family, pointing out to the “hypocrisy” of the Join Meeting Parties’ politicians’ rhetoric as many of its leaders benefited from this patronage.
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