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Political reform is driven by the needs of the new reality — House speaker

Oudat says 19th Parliament has done a good job in anti-corruption legislation

There are no flaws in the laws governing the political life, but the new stage requires a new approach to the process, a leading lawmaker has said. (Photo: Jordan News)
There are no flaws in the laws governing the political life, but the new stage requires a new approach to the process, a leading lawmaker has said. (Photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — There are no flaws in the laws governing the political life, but the new stage requires a new approach to the process, a leading lawmaker has said.اضافة اعلان

Speaker of the Lower House Abdul-Monem Al-Oudat said in an interview with Jordan News: “In my opinion, there is no specific loophole in the Election, Political Parties, or the Decentralization law. This is a new phase in the history of Jordan and there is a political, economic and social reality that requires a quality leap…”

He added that the time when an executive authority runs all public affairs without the participation of citizens in the decision-making process “is behind us”.

Oudat said when we revisit legislation related to political life, “it is not text of the law, nor the way it has been applied, it is all about analyzing its impact on public life” and see if there is a need to make changes.

“This is exactly what His Majesty the King wants. He has been meeting with all the social and political groups and has had with all open and sincere discussions, let alone that he has direct knowledge of the situation of his people across the Kingdom. Based on these realities, and his vision for the future, he is pushing for change and modernization” in a manner that serves the higher interests of the country.

A case in point is the decentralization drive, which began in 2011, and culminated into a reality that is “below expectations,” the speaker said.

“…What has been achieved on the ground was below expectations, and therefore, there has been a need to examine the outcome of the process and revisit the process to remove all obstacles that have over the past few years hindered the process and prevented us from achieving the core goals of decentralization.”

The interview was conducted with Oudat as the Royal Committee for Political Modernization, formed by His Majesty King Abdullah and chaired by Senator Samir Rifai, embarked on its mandate to suggest new laws to revamp political life.

The goal of the 92-strong panel is to modernize and improve Jordan’s political system, starting with the laws regulating political parties and elections. It is expected that the sub-committees will finish their work by August 15th.

Reform-related literature also includes the anti-corruption drive. During a meeting with tribal leaders this week, His Majesty said fighting graft requires a teamwork spirit.

Oudat highlighted what he described as achievements in legislation to curb corruption made by the 19th Parliament, citing amendments to the law governing the work of the Integrity and Anti-Corruption Commission and the Audit  Bureau, based on the lawmakers’ belief that “corruption is the greatest threat to the state” because it erodes  its foundations from inside.

He also highlighted the provision set by the legislators to consider vote buying as a form of corruption, ensuring at the same time to defend individuals against smear campaigns and character assassination. 

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