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Launching a Report on Political Corruption on the Arab Region

Lebanon - Thursday, June 26, 2014

Beirut 06/26/2014 – In a remarkable initiative, Transparency International through its Lebanese and Palestinian national chapters developed a regional specialized report on "Political corruption in the Arab world" which was based on information derived from Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Tunisia and Yemen, and was launched during a press conference organized by the Lebanese Transparency Association (No corruption) yesterday in Beirut. The Association’s president and the coordinator of ACINET’s Non-Governmental Group, Ms. Nada Abdul Sater, opened the press conference by welcoming the attendees, and stressing on the importance of the report, and calling to reconsider the laws that govern citizen and central authority’s relationship in a way that enhances citizen participation in governance. During the press conference, the report’s results were presented by Dr. Azmi Shuaibi, representative of the Coalition for Accountability and Integrity in Palestine (AMAN). The report pointed to the existence of a set of measures taken by ruling classes in Arab countries, which lead to the disability of anti-corruption efforts, and according to the report among these measures, "the executive branch’s dominance on the legislature and the judiciary and on the decision-making’s process”. The report referred that "the chief executive and the institutions that follow him are not subject to direct oversight and accountability by Parliament and public oversight bodies," adding that this "reinforces personalization and political favoritism and geographical and tribal and sectarian’s intolerance". The report added that the main characteristics of political corruption in the Arab countries are “control of elections”, “mismanagement of public money," and “politicization of media”, and sometimes the ways of abusing military and security institutions in the political process is not undue. The report also made a number of recommendations, which according to the writers would raise the level of guarantees for non-repetition of previous political corruption’s cases. Foremost of these recommendations is, constitution’s inclusion of obligations that allow balanced distribution of powers among the authorities, and subject all authorities to a mutual control, and protect the right to information. Moreover, such as the necessity of activating the mechanisms of accountability, and to refrain from granting immunity to any executive body, and the abolition of all legal texts that affects the independence of judiciary.


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