WHEN honorable MP Riyah Al-Adsani raised the bribery issue, a lot of events came to mind. The list of names according to the efforts of Al-Adsani consisted of the 2009 Parliament members. I will not question his efforts as this is under the jurisdiction of judicial authorities but I will discuss the same issue in another angle.
I have been observing the Parliament since the liberation. The financial status of many MPs has changed drastically as if the lamp of Aladdin appeared to them fulfilling their wishes! A lot have heard about the stories of raining money on the bank accounts of MPs then. Those who observe and pay attention to the events that time will understand what I am talking about.
After that, we heard about the passage of controversial laws in unclear terms. We heard about the interpellation motion on the millions of dinars! What about the licenses of academic institutions? – that is another one. Last but not the least, is the issue about tenders, real estates, shares and official appointments – a thousand question marks!
No political movement that passed by the Parliament is excluded from what I mentioned above – even the so-called independents and the 2013 Parliament which exhibited submissiveness and suspicious obedience to the extent it became an extension of the government. So disastrous were the laws passed under its nose. Has the Parliament become subordinated to what I have pointed out?
Believe me, a corrupt MP comes from within the society, if not, he is the same as his fans and supporters. They do not question him nor hold him accountable. They keep quiet and fl atter him because of give-and-take in transactions. If the MP found those who will stop him among the electorate, we would not have seen the continuation of breaking rules or norms. We are seeing a give-and-take culture between the corrupt electorate and the MP who is more corrupt than the electorate. Instead of holding accountable those who complicate transactions and treat citizens unjustly, the MP sees this an opportunity to achieve personal and electoral interests by completing transactions for certain people and favoring some over others.
Complicating important transactions and treating citizens unjustly are the reasons behind the emergence of bribery scandal MPs and other failed pro-transaction MPs who are easily bought and sold to the highest bidder in the slave market.
The problem in all of this is the corrupt electorate who know the negative aspects of the MP and his poor performance. Despite the poor performance, they reelected the dead wood for tribal, sectarian, family and other reasons.
The electorate must know they are the first safety valve: if they take the right decision in electing the man, we would not have heard of bribery. The government would then find itself in front of a Parliament of statesmen and it would be forced to deal with the latter according to aspirations of citizens. However, if the will of the people tumbles, so will be your MP. May God help us!!
By Yousef Awadh Al-Azmi