Tuesday, August 29, 2006

For whatever its worth (19)

Malaysia became host to the 1st OIC Anti Corruption and Enhancing Integrity Forum. A delegate was reported to have proposed that the OIC allocate a dedicated session to discuss anti corruption in each of its annual summit.

Such move should be lauded and hopefully all OIC countries including Malaysia could rid themselves from the despicable social ill that could cripple a state and tarnish the image of Islam that abhors such practice.

But what amused me most from this two day conference was the participation of a representative from the Palestinian FATAH movement, Prof Dr Najat Omar, an opposition Palestinian legislator (HAMAS defeated FATAH in the recent elections).

Najat came and blamed the HAMAS government for putting Palestine on number 112 out of 158 corrupted countries listed by Tranparency International with Transparency International Corruption Perception Index (CPI) of 2.6 as of last year.

But let us not be deceived as factually HAMAS only came into power early this year. It was the FATAH led government then that accumulated such shameful record on behalf of the Palestinian nation.

Dr Najat should have told the conference that FATAH was discarded and rejected by the Palestinian voters as a result of their atrocious record. Most political analyst attributed FATAHs demise in the hands of HAMAS as a result of this.

According to Middle East Online:

Analysts and officials believe that Fatah's failure to deliver peace to the residents of the West Bank and Gaza Strip lies at the heart of its current crisis.

But they also point to resentment at the culture of corruption and incompetence at all levels of the Palestinian Authority at a time when poverty and unemployment have been rife.

The voters chose to punish the Palestinian Authority as represented by Fatah for its mismanagement during the last decade,said Nashat al Aqtash from the West Banks Bir Zeit university.

The TIME magazine (13/03/06 issue) commented:

Hamas by contrast, have a reputation for discipline and honesty and have vowed to hunt down corrupt Fatah officials. Nor does it help that in 1996, as Arafat tried to wipe out opposition to him, dozens of Islamic militants were jailed, tortured and murdered by his supporters.
Fatah guys were worse than the Israelis, recalled a member of a third militant group, Islamic Jihad. The Israelis would stop beating us to let us pray. Fatah never stopped.
Therefore it is unfortunate that the host country could blatantly invite a representative from a party that do not command the support of the Palestinian, and has a questionable reputation to a conference such as this.

In fact the Malaysian government itself possesses a tainted reputation as far as corrupt practices are concerned; no wonder they are easily comfortable with FATAH rather than HAMAS. Wise men think alike they say.

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