Jamal Shobaki

(1952- )


Born 1952; Ithna. Married with three children.

Cabinet Position

Minister of Local Government

Cabinet Responsibilities

The Cabinet Minister's responsibilities are to set a general policy for the Ministry and supervise its organization, management and monitor implementation. Control, supervise and develop implementation of laws, regulations and instructions related to of the Ministry, and Local councils. Promote development of local government. Direct the councils' budgets in order to achieve the desired progress and development. Examine the administrative performance and work on increasing Productivity, as well as enhance the abilities of the administrative bodies of the Ministry and the Councils.

Education

B.A in Geography, Beirut Arab University

Background

Shobaki’s political career began as an activist. A member of Fatah, he was imprisoned by Israel for 10 years for his activism during the first Palestinian uprising against occupation. He is a member of the PLO Central Council, and a member of the Fatah Revolutionary Council. He was nominated as the Minister of Local Governmnet in the new Palestinian Authority Cabinet of 2003.

In 1996, he was elected to the Palestine Legislative Council representing the Hebron District. He is head of the PLC Economic Committee, a member of the PLC Political Committee and a member of the PLC Political Prisoners Committee. Shobaki is also a member of the PLO Central Committee.

Analysis

Given his background, one may think that Shobaki's perceptions are overshadowed by his internment experience. Yet, many feel Shobaki remains open minded about the causes of the problems in the Palestinian territories. Shobaki has been widely quoted criticizing Arafat for corruption, and suggesting that the chaos of the Palestinian Authority is more dangerous than occupation.

Mr. Shobaki is against Palestinian alliance building with Iraq or Iran.


Source: Palestine Media Center; Palestine-pmc.com; MiddleEastReference.org.uk; CNN.org; The Los Angeles Times, New York Times, (January 1, 2003); Jerusalem Post, (1998); Seattle P-I, (May 17, 2002); PNA.org