October 31, 2010

"I want the corruption to end"

This coming from a man who was implicated in several corruption cases along with his Godfather Asif Zardari and spouse Benazir Bhutto. Sounds farcical doesn’t it? But then that’s the hallmark of our society. When people like Rehman Malik, who incidentally does not have the balls to face the charges he faces in court, send out verbal telecasts to his subordinates that they need to put their houses in order and end their corruption, I can bet they smile and shrug. I know I would. After all, how do you take a man known to be a cavalier seriously? Beats me.

The issue does not lie with the statements, it lies with the intentions. Why does the government of Rehman Malik have to wait till the 7th? If they are so against corruption, why can’t they launch an anti corruption operation right now? Why does Rehman Malik have to get in front of a mike and shout out to the world that he’s coming after the corrupt? Wouldn’t it be more prudent to launch a quiet exercise that tries to catch the perpetrators in the act?

Now don’t think that this is a conspiracy theory, and that I’m an agent of separatism in this country. What bothers me is that it is almost 3 years since the government took over and since then, we have only gone from bad to worse in terms of corruption. Why is it that every time the PPP government takes charge, there is an alarming rise in corruption, lawlessness, violence, poverty, unemployment and utter and complete mismanagement? And how can an allegedly corrupt man, who shies away from proving his innocence in court, lecture people on morality?

Instead of owning up to their mistakes and misdemeanors, the powers that be want to throw even more muck in the eyes of this overly burdened nation; but facts will always be facts, and the truths will never be suppressed. The notion of Rehman Malik telling his subordinates to mend their ways or else face his ire is laughable at best.

Then there is the issue of transparency and accountability associated with it. Only recently there were reports that the PPP wanted to bring in a so-called “anti-corruption” law, which would in fact have replaced the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) with a milder commission full of handpicked cronies of the government. This attitude does not augur well for the carte Blanche desires that the PPP wants us to believe are fact. Until this government can own up to its mistakes, and does something concrete to prove that it is sincere in its intentions, such claims like the one made by Rehman Malik will be treated with a lack of seriousness.

It is high time the government actually did something about its credibility. The foreign governments’ refusal to give aid, and finance legitimate projects in Pakistan are solely due to the inability of the government to unmask the corrupt hiding in its shadow. Not only that, but even those who are known to be mired in neck deep corruption are not apprehended and put behind bars. But I suppose that is too much to ask of a government whose boss is known internationally as Mr. Ten Percent.