I’m truly sorry to read of the passing of Ghazi Al-Gosaibi. Not only did I know and like him, but he represented the sort of government official who is in far too short a supply in Saudi Arabia. His love for his country and for his fellow Saudis was amply demonstrated by the regulations he sought to create to bring more Saudi women into the workplace, to control the explosive growth of expatriate labor, to reduce the unemployment problem that desperately needs a solution.
This piece from Arab News notes that beyond being a bureaucrat and diplomat, Al-Gosaibi was also a noted poet and novelist. His poetry sometimes got him in trouble—at home and abroad—due to its pointed nature. For a while, he was in semi-exile in Bahrain (as Ambassador) because he’d offended the government. His writings, in fact, were largely banned in the Kingdom until last month, according to the London Times’ obituary.
Ghazi Al-Gosaibi was one who did not suffer idiots. I’m sure he’s gone to a place where idiots are in short supply.
Al-Gosaibi’s passing leaves a literary void
Siraj Wahab — Arab News
He was a creative icon, cultural ambassador and great administrator, all rolled into one
ALKHOBAR: Labor Minister Ghazi Al-Gosaibi, known for his poetic talents, died Sunday at 70, the Royal Court announced. He died at King Faisal Specialist Hospital in Riyadh following a prolonged illness. He was buried Sunday evening after funeral prayers at Riyadh’s Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque.
“Al-Gosaibi was a prominent government official who served the country sincerely with dedication. He had held several important positions and the last position was the minister of labor,” the Royal Court said.
Acting Riyadh Gov. Prince Sattam attended the prayers along with a large number of citizens and expatriates, many of whom recalled with fondness the impact the minister made on so many lives and his efforts to promote the employment of Saudis in all levels of employment. The minister was well-known for maintaining high spirits even when addressing heady issues.