The Sultanate has maintained its third rank among Gulf Cooperation Council nations and the Arab world in terms of stability. But the fact is the nation’s impressive show for the second successive year would surprise few living in this land of peace and tranquility. The Sultanate is 45th worldwide on the stability/fragility index compiled by Fund for Peace which is headed by Finland. Somalia is at the very bottom of the 178-state list.
In fact the Sultanate’s position has steadily improved since 2011 attesting to the excellent job that the government has been doing. It scored 52.5 points, improving by 0.4 points from 2016 and 2.4 points from 2011.
The ranking is calculated on the basis of 12 indicators of state vulnerability comprising external interventions, group grievance, security apparatus, parallel state security, human rights and rule of law, factionalised elites, state legitimacy conditions, public services, poverty and economic decline, uneven economic development, human flight and brain drain, refugees and internally displaced persons and demographic pressures.
Each of these indicators calculated by the Washington-based not-for-profit watchdog is considered important in alerting nations about impending trouble. Citizens and residents of the Sultanate know well the sterling performance of the nation in each of the key indicators.
The Sultanate is among nations in the region with the least external intervention issues, thanks to the sound diplomacy followed under the sagacious guidance of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said. The nation’s government has sought to redress grievance of communities of even the most remote parts of the nation with alacrity resulting in little for any group to gripe about.
The Sultanate’s security apparatus is among the most efficient of the region to meet internal and external threats. The Royal Oman Police is known as the epitome of efficiency when it comes to law enforcement and preventive policing. The courteous but stern personnel of ROP have been cited by many as a model force. The Sultan’s Armed Forces is manned by well-trained officers and served by highly motivated personnel. All three wings of the armed forces have sophisticated equipment that have helped to keep the Sultanate an oasis of peace in an otherwise troubled region.
Ever since the beginning of the Glorious Renaissance, the nation has been known as a paradigm for rule of law and respect for human rights and it is no wonder that the Sultanate scores well on these counts among all middle-income nations. The government takes extreme care to deliver public services and has been in the forefront of inducting modern technologies to ensure efficiency of service delivery.
The social welfare schemes of the government reach the remotest parts of the nation touching all aspects of daily life of the citizens. That has been the secret of the nation’s high ranking on the global happiness index as well. The nation’s decentralised development programme has taken economic development to the farthest regions ensuring that the skilled youth have ample job opportunities.
The Sultanate’s inclusive development paradigm has made problems like human flight, brain drain and internal displacement of people next to nil. Steady improvement on these counts has the potential to see the nation move further up on the index in the years ahead.