The Saudi English language daily The Arab News published this story on April 17, 2017. It was translated from a story that appeared in the Saudi daily Okaz. A link to the story is here, and the text is pasted below.
RIYADH: Abdulrahman Al-Rashed, head of Shoura Council’s committee on
economy and energy, said he is in favor of women driving “as long as
there is a clear system to enable them to drive.”
He said in an interview with Okaz newspaper that Shoura Council members should not be silent on this issue.
Al-Rashed said the extent of criticism they receive indicates high
expectations from the council. He said the council does not serve a
certain category of people but rather, plays a monitoring role,
participates in legislations, studies government departments’ reports
and issues recommendations aimed at improving the performance of those
He said all members deal with the issues discussed and vote on them, but do not form blocs.
Women’s participation in the council is developing every day, he said.
“Their presence in the council is positive. They propose discussions on
important issues related to society.”
Rejecting proposals or recommendations is done by the members of the council themselves.
“No hidden hands prevent the council proposals,” he said. “There are no
restrictions as Article 23 gives a member the right to file proposals.”
He said the issue of women driving had been discussed in the council,
and the traffic department does not have a law preventing them from
He said the question is how to enable them to drive — if there is a
clear regulation that allows women to drive “then I am with it,
especially as there is no Sharia restriction on the issue.”