Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The “fighting corruption” fiasco

One of Marouf Bakhit’s famous achievements is taking up the mantle of fighting corruption. In one case, the ex-minister of municipalities and senior ministry officials were questioned on the garbage press case. Basically, when Abdurazzaq Tubeishat was a minister of municipalities, he engineered the merger of adjacent municipalities across the country. In an effort to make this work, garbage collecting equipment was needed. When he tried to get funds for this, he was told that the government couldn’t afford to buy this equipment. So, it was suggested and the decision was made to buy used equipment from Germany. The government could afford that, and so a delegation was formed to go to Germany to get the needed equipment.

After the equipment was delivered, allegations that some of it did not meet the specifications were made by the General Accounting Bureau. Since then, the issue has been raised a number of times. Finally, a parliamentary committee studied the issue. The resulting report concludes that Tubeishat did nothing wrong, and that the issue of the sanitary equipment was handled correctly. Tubeishat is threatening to sue for defamation.

A second front on the war on corruption was on the General Union of Voluntary Societies. The case against GUVS (a scam to collect lottery ticket winnings for unsold tickets) was thrown out of the court yesterday (on a technicality). The other issues still being studied have stalled, also suggesting that the cases are flawed. Time will tell.

During the last parliamentary session, deputy Fawwaz Zoubi asserted that previous governments have given tax breaks to a certain individual worth 45 million dinars. This was also based on a General Accounting Bureau report. After a parliamentary investigation, the committee investigating the issue found that this was not true, and that the tax exemptions were legal and appropriate, and benefited a large number of companies.

Now, the failure of the grand scheme to eradicate corruption gives pause. Does not corruption exist in Jordan? Are the wrong cases focused on, in order to hide real corruption? How useful are General Accounting Bureau reports? It seems that upon follow up, many of their allegations do not add up to real corruption.

Former minister of water, Hazim Nasser, who was dismissed when Adnan Badran took office, says that attempts to collect two million dinars for water consumed by companies in the Disi area were frozen by Badran. Investigations show that Badran is a major shareholder in one of the companies that is supposed to pay. This seems to be well documented. Will this be investigated? Or is the anti-corruption campaign over?

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16 Comments:

At 11:31 PM, Blogger Mohanned Al-arabiat said...

Khalaf,
You remember bateekhi, I think he is free now and was prisoned in "london", do you remember petra bank and al jalabi, we heared some fuss but then el jalabi threatened to open closed doors, then we never heared of the story again. Why all companies when owned by the government report losses then after they are sold all of a sudden youo see profit?How does some people suddenly own millions and millions when they become ministers..How one prime minister used to own nothing then all of a sudden he has more than 70 millions..
In all khalaf, I see those people as a mafia..The soloution is to outsource our government and I am serious about that...
One more interesting question that I would like to find an answer to:
After the iraqi invasion the US gave jordan 1.5 billion dollars, our oil was free for 2 years after the invasion, they raised the gas prices, we got aid from japan and from saudi arabia? Where in the hell did that go!!!!!!We payed for the gas which was for free so they got the price two times!!!

 
At 11:43 PM, Blogger Khalaf said...

This is why all the talk about fighting corruption is perceived to be drat 3al balat.

 
At 11:56 PM, Blogger Mohanned Al-arabiat said...

Khalaf,
I heared it from someone who worked in the government and thats what he said exaclty:" It is an open money tap, If I don't take some of that someone else will".

And I don't know If you "jordan street story" where all the land in that area was purchased before the decision to open this street, those land were bought bse3er el trab and now this "guy" is a millionerrrr..
It is a MAFIA... o zay ma begooloha el mlee7 ma be6awwel, look at marwan el m3ashe, hazem el naser, and the previous treasury minister they are all gone because they tried to be honest!!Some times I feel that there is no hope, but again it is jordan and we have to do what we can..

 
At 6:12 AM, Blogger Habchawi said...

Can you explain to me how a gov employee with (max) 500 JD salary can afford a housing in Amman and feed his/her kids and put them in private school.....etc. And what’s really interested is how they become business men in matter of weeks following their retirement?
So corruption is there in way or another. The question is who is really slowing the anti-corruption activities is it the gov, the parliament or booth?
The General accounting bureau needs more power and independence. Why not enabling them to prosecute officials without the need to get approval? If it’s really hard to prosecute ministers, they can start with high ranks.
Any way from the way things are looking now I really doubt much will change. and if the government is really looking for a way to fight corruption they can start with making their operations and decisions transparent to the public. In my opinion this will be prove to be more effective and convincing to the people that all of this fancy organizations we are starting the anti-corruption bureau, anti-corruption court and laws.
This is the last statement for bakhit البخيت : قوى متنفذة تقاوم مكافحة الفساد
It’s like watching the same episode in the series for the 100 time. I am just sick of it.

 
At 7:17 PM, Blogger Hatem Abunimeh said...

I have been reading about efforts to combat corruption since Ahmad Obiedat was prime minister. More recently I read that corruption is now instutionalized, this means that doubling or even tripling the effort is now needed to combat this scourge of our time-- festering disease.The problem of corruption is so inveterate and so rampant to a degree that I'm not sure that there is any readily available solution for it.

 
At 2:53 AM, Blogger Who's-sane! said...

very interesting post. thanks for the update khalaf. I don't think I'll be coming back to Jordan anytime soon.

 
At 11:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Khallaf,
You seam to be very selective in outing alleged corrupt officials. I think in a country like ours, and in a blog like yours, the Mobey Dicks of corruption should be named first before hinting on a civil man like Adnan Badran unless you think that he is the worst of all.

We know now that you praise Waleed Al Masri and you showed us the evils of Nader Dohairat and now Adnan Badran.

Can you endeavor to research and add some more names to either camp. I think this will add more integrity to the outing of corrupt officials.

Mefleh

 
At 8:56 AM, Blogger Khalaf said...

Mefleh: I am not selective, and I don't have an agenda. I got heat for defending Badran before he was fired. I am not sure what you are trying to imply. I am not interested in defaming people because of innuendo or rumors. If there is substantiated wrong doing, I will write about it.

 
At 12:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Khallaf,
"am not interested in defaming people because of innuendo or rumors. If there is substantiated wrong doing, I will write about it. "

This is very reassuring. We are a happier bunch that this Khallaf institution or think tank is/are very content with those corrupt officials mentioned in this blog.

I am looking forward to be educated in another post of yours
Mefleh

 
At 7:12 AM, Blogger Mohanned Al-arabiat said...

Was this last comment a kind of "sarcasm"?

 
At 12:26 PM, Blogger Khalaf said...

Mohanned: I suppose. There is a touch of anger. He'll get over it.

 
At 1:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think saying that i am not angy will not add anything. However,i felt disapointed that this well researched site is maybe stearing the e public,us,to some alleged corrupt officials. The list is far greater and the integrity probe will travell alongside future corruption threads. Just a thought, i hope that Khallaf is nickname for a person who is keen and concerned rather than a collection of personells with a budget and agenda. Before you say it, like you, i hate people who think that there is a conspiracy behind every conspiracy!!

N.B: THIS REPLY AND MY PREVIOUS ONES FOR OTHER THREADS CLASSIFY ME AS A FAN OF THIS SITE AND I USE ITS RESOURCES FOR WORK AND PLEASURE

Mefleh

 
At 7:34 PM, Blogger Mohanned Al-arabiat said...

Khalaf,
I would like to answer this one.
Mefleh, this post covered something that was in the papers in that specific week and that is why khalaf posted his analysis about this specific subject, and if you see in my comments I pointed to some of other cases and khalaf didn't deny or say that this is not true, he agreed that there is corruption nad talking about it is just like drat 3l balat that will get us no where...

 
At 4:16 PM, Anonymous baby prophet said...

oh, please contact me on this e-mail address:

krasshalt@yahoo.de

thanks again

 
At 4:17 PM, Anonymous baby prophet said...

Dear "Khalaf" and other commenters:
allow me to introduce myself; (due to censorship) my name is N; i work at a german NGO represented in Jordan working with local partners on implementing development projects; mainly citizenship and political and social awareness; the orientation of the foundation is Liberal; but it is not what we preach necessarily. this is my third time to visit your blog; lovely.

One project is "Youth Against Corruption"; it's a group of university students and youth entering the labour market. our aim is to work with the public on regulations and procedural corruption from daily life... we're working on the bottom of the pyramid because the tip is a sharp edge as the previous comments convey.

I would be grateful for anything you have to advise the group on intelligent steps to nudge the public to look outside beyond the bars behind which the public is imprisoned, voluntarily in some cases.

Thank you very much for your understanding and consideration, wishes for prosperity

N

 
At 3:49 PM, Anonymous Fadi said...

Hi everyone, the issue against corruption needs to be discussed more often and more events need to be held so that we can make a positive change regarding this subject.. which we are doing, and we need more people to participate.. so if anyone wants to join and be notified about these events, just kindly send me an email on Hey_whats_up_im@hotmail.com.. Thank you all :)

 

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