Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is leading Time magazine’s people’s poll for its “Person of the Year 2017” award. The famous poll which has been published on an annual basis for 90 years awards a chosen person who has had “the most influence over the news in the last 12 months.”
Crown Prince Mohammed has racked up global headlines this year as he spearheads political and economic reform in Saudi Arabia. Key reforms in Saudi Arabia have included the move to allow women to drive, plans to sell a stake in national oil giant Aramco, restricting the powers of the religious police and a clampdown on corruption that has seen many royals and business people detained.
By securing almost a quarter of the vote, Crown Prince Mohammed is currently 18 percentage points ahead of the nearest contender, the #MeToo campaign, which highlighted sexual harassment cases globally. Time editors drew up the shortlist of 33 people from diverse fields of activities across the world. The Time Person of the Year award has previously honored luminaries including Yasser Arafat and Yitzhak Rabin (1993), Gandhi (1930) and Winston Churchill (1940, 1949). It has also previously seen some controversial choices of winner, such as Joseph Stalin (1942) and Ayatollah Khomeini (1979).