The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a man-dominated monarchy headed by a king. The king serves as the head for both the state and government. The king chooses the apparent heir that will future relieve him of his duties by Royal Order. The heir then will assume the kingdom upon the king’s death.
Qur’an, also known as Koran, serves as the constitution of the country, wherein the standards and values taught by the Islamic law are based from. All decisions to be made even in the judicial processes of the country are based on the teachings stated in the Koran. It follows the Wahhabi ideology. It protects Islam which tells the people to do good and reject evil. The enforcement of such laws makes human rights to be non-existent. They strictly enforce capital punishment to be given to deviants even without due process of law.
There are no political parties and national elections in this type of governing system. The first local elections however, were held in 2005, wherein half of the council members were chosen while the rest of its members were appointed by the government. Also, trade unions and public demonstrations are strictly banned in the country.
The Council of Ministers whose members are appointed by the king consists of a prime minister, first and second deputy prime ministers, twenty ministers, two ministers of state, and some few advisers and heads of major autonomous organizations. Aside from implementing government policies, it oversees the internal, external, economic, financial, social, educational, defense and other matters of the state. The king however has the right to dissolve or reorganize the Council. He also has the right to appoint officers or end their term since he is also the commander-in-chief. This is still in accordance to the law.
The provincial system which started in 1993 was formed to facilitate and sustain the continuous development of the country’s provinces. Each of the 14 provinces is headed by an Emir. An Emir is a governor appointed by the king. A provincial system or local government consists of an emir, a vice governor, a provincial council, and a ten-member council of prominent individuals in the community.
The Majlis Al-Shura serves as the adviser of the king and the Council of Ministers on matters concerning government policies and programs. Its function is to make assessments, interpretations and to modify systems of laws, contracts, and international agreements. It is composed of 90 prominent members of social, political and religious sectors.
At present, Saudi Arabia is headed by King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz, the fifth son of Al Saud. He serves as the Chairman of the Supreme Economic Council, President of the High Coucil for Petroleum and Minerals, President of the King Abdulaziz Centre for National Dialogue, Chairman of the Council of Civil Service and Head of the Military Service Council. Assisting him is Prince Sultan Bin Aziz, the crowned prince of Saudi and functions as the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector General.