RIYADH – All set to mark the historic day in the Kingdom as on Sunday, June 24, women will be behind the wheels making Saudi Arabia the last country in the world to lift female driving restrictions. Everybody is busy in their own way. Some are preparing for this day, while others are taking driving lessons and while some others are learning traffic signs and symbols.
The General Directorate of Traffic is full of activity in organizing a three-day introductory driving event across four cities in the Kingdom that ends on Saturday.
The event named “Tawakali Wa Intaliqi” (Trust in God and Drive) in Jeddah, Riyadh, Dammam and Tabuk conglomerates entertainment with information in guiding the future female drivers.
The General Directorate of Traffic of the Ministry of Interior is organizing the event with Saudi Telecom Company (STC), Saudi Aramco, Dallah Al-Barakah, Al-Hokair Group, and several other private entities.
According to the organizers, the event seeks to overcome panic and hesitation holding back women from driving as well as to increase awareness on road safety.
In an outdoor arena, several stations also included entertainment such as go-karting and racing video games in aid of achieving the above goals.
Though they have done all their homework, still there are some speculations among the women as to how they would perform on the road in actual practice. Some are apprehensive about the traffic while others are worried about parking. It may take some time to fall everything in their right place. Many women who prefer to wait say they fear road accidents in the beginning.
“First and foremost, I would like to thank the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and the Crown Prince for the generous decision to allow women to drive. We hope that this marks the beginning of a new era of raising the Saudi family’s awareness of road safety and will educate young people about rules of the road in order to cut the number of traffic accidents and the subsequent human and economic losses they entail.” said Maj. Gen. Mohammad Al-Bassami, Director General of the General Department of Traffic.
The historic decision in September 2017 by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman to allow women to drive starting June 24 has been praised around the world. The decision is in line with the Vision 2030 blueprint for the future, spearheaded by Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman. Women’s empowerment is an important element in Vision 2030 and the future of Saudi Arabia.