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MANY monarchies fell when their members were preoccupied with daily affairs, and competing with commoners in their businesses because the state failed to preserve their dignity by allocating sufficient funds for them.
Subsequently, based on the privilege of being from the ruling house or the royal family, and due to the difference in the status between the royals and commoners, the former became corrupt and they corrupted others at the same time, causing people to revolt and the kingdoms thus fell.
Therefore, financial sufficiency for the royals has been a factor that maintained the political and social stability of countries for centuries. Such sufficiency is organized through a series of laws and constitutions that obligated them in this matter.
Hence, we saw the European kingdoms survive revolutions for three centuries, such as The Netherlands which is still working with a constitution that was established in 1772. Despite all the amendments made to it, the articles related to the royals were not modified, as they were in Denmark and Norway.
On the other hand, the tyranny of the children of the French Bourbon family and the lack of good academic preparation for them, as well as their crowding out of people in trade and business led to the French Revolution in the eighteenth century. This had sparked the fall of the dominoes of several European monarchies that followed the French tradition.
The other monarchies were more prudent in managing family affairs and keeping them away from indulging in trade, business, and jobs that are related to the public.
The ruling families throughout history have been the symbol of the legitimacy of government. The stability and development of the state is derived from their stability.
Therefore when some of its members combine public office and commercial competition, this will inevitably lead to what the Messenger of Almighty Allah – Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), had warned of when he said, “When the power or authority comes in the hands of unfit persons, then wait for the Doomsday”, especially if these jobs are sensitive and have discretionary powers, such as security, interior, foreign affairs, defense, and food security, which unfortunately has emerged in recent years.
In Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Oman, the ruler uses a group of qualified, impartial experts. Most of them are not from the ruling house. In fact, they do not choose any advisor from the ruling family unless he has training, experience, and good education.
These are the ones who draw plans to manage state funds and set policies based on merits, and without any favoritism. This is why those countries succeeded in development and progress, and overcame many difficulties.
Among the traditions and customs in force in the monarchies is that none of its members should need the rest of the people. In fact, if any citizen knocks on his door for a need, he can help him. For this it was said in the olden days – “Way to one’s heart is through his stomach”, which is why the diwaniyas of the sheikhs remain open.
However, if a royal does not have enough of the money that the state pays him, he will resort to other methods and use the family name to open closed doors. Corruption will then spread. Therefore, it is necessary to preserve the family’s prestige by preserving its position and keeping it away from competing with people on the ground for the sake of livelihood.
By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times