Guest Post by Silence
Corruption and governance goes together in developing countries, especially the third world where democratic process is influenced by bloodline, money politics, feudalism, intervention of imperialist powers through military and religious exploitations. The process becomes more painful when the society is trying to develop from under develop, while profiled as ‘high risk investment zones’ these countries need investment for development, the clever investor who is aware of this fact bargains for softer terms and governments are unable to deny, the rules are relaxed and projects vital for survival of society are given to these investors, an example of this is can be the IPP’s in past Benazir Bhutto’s regime in Pakistan which was widely criticized at that time but proved to be a lifeline for Pakistan’s industry in following decade. It’s not a national interest which forces the governments to relax the rules, once relaxed in broader national interests, these rules become a tool for corruption and personal benefits, the prime examples are Pakistan’s defense agreements, where an Air Force Chief got kick backs of Billion of $ and many politicians like Asif Ali Zardari and Nawaz Sharif multiplied their holdings, Shaukat Azaiz sold the national institutions for personal gains and was forced to stop from handing over Pakistan Steel and a PIA owned hotel in New York by Supreme Court and Pakistan Senate respectively, the father in law of former dictator Pervez Musharraff got the contract of elevated Rail track in Karachi for five times higher bid from national exchequer then the Chinese company offered and that too on soft loan basis.
That’s not the end, the country I am living presently was a model of development for decades in developing world, one weekend while I was on a pleasure ride of motorbike with my Canadian friend to a resort hill nearby our housing, we were surprised that a few kilometers bridge on ocean existed just behind our houses to connect the mainland with an Island, standing on top of hill and surrounded by beautiful clouds watching the beautiful bridge, we asked a local about that bridge and answer was “It’s bridge to no where”, to our utter surprise, the contract of that bridge was given to oblige somebody, the second most surprising project I cam across was a ‘Slaughter House” built by public funds and capable of slaughtering entire population of animals in country in a single year, obviously it didn’t operated a single day from its installation.
The situation reminds me of a quote and policy statement of most respected former Prime Minister in Muslim world who turned his country in to a model of development “Let the cake grow and everyone have a bite”. There were a lots of failed projects awarded in his regime on political and personal grounds while the rules were being relaxed to achieve development and in the same time there was huge development in infrastructure and industrialization, the end result is the most developed nation in Muslaim world, not a bad achievement.
I always wonder, is corruption, incompetence, personal gains a valid reason for toppling the democratic governments by equally corrupt military dictators in uniforms? The answer can be obtained from developed world, President Bush, while accomplishing the “Neo Con” agenda, pushed United States of America in to two unwanted and undesirable wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which were initiated on false facts and have proven a disaster for economy and military of the worlds strongest economic and military power, they are facing a shameful defeat on military front and their economy is heading nose down, but surprisingly inside the military ranks of the biggest supporter of dictatorship in world, no general took over in wake of stupid decisions of a ‘cow boy president’. There are undeniable proofs of politicians and oil companies owned by the President and Vice President getting benefits from this war and many defense contracts being awarded as political favor to sponsor corporations of politicians, but still a chance is being given to the political system to refine itself by American public.
We, a source less and helpless nation at time of independence in 1947 were subjected to dictatorship by General Iskindar Mirza, who was a great grand son of the ‘notorious traitor Mir Jafar’ and subsequently were victims of Ayub, Yahya, Ziaul Haq and Musharraff on the sole ground of incompetence and corruption of political leaders and most of times these corruption and incompetence allegations were a result of agencies propaganda and part of plan of imperialist powers.
Considering such military intervention as a valid ground, there should have been several military intervention inside the biggest champion of democracy USA itself, but unfortunately this always happens in the third world countries where imperialism have its interests and these interests demand a ‘one man show’, as dealing with a one weak man in uniform is easier for imperialism then dealing with politicians who at some stage have to think about public opinion.
Although every nation and society deserves to be ruled by a transparent and honest leadership but there can be certain exemptions, even corrupt and incompetent political leadership opens doors for better a ‘better choice’ in future and must be given a chance in third world democratic process, the system and awareness in people will ultimately replace the corrupt and incompetent with more transparent and capable leadership. The same process through which the ‘Champion of democracy’ and biggest violator of it, went through in 200 years.
Obviously, we the Pakistani’s deserve better, we have some of the finest professionals in world, we posses some of the biggest natural resources, we have the most hard working people on planet and we have a desire to excel, what we need its to undergo the natural process of transformation.
If, Fatimah Jinnah was not defeated by a Dictator Ayub through state machinery, if Bhutto was not assassinated by a General and if Nawaz was not handcuffed by a dictator, undoubtedly our political institutions would have been a lot better then today, but its not late, we need to give a chance to system to work, we need to wait for political process to mature and bring some fine, honest and capable leaders but we can not skip the process itself for a refinement in leadership.
We have to live with corruption and incompetence and let the system refine itself, we have to bear the incompetence for competence, there is no quick fix in form of dictatorship and military take over’s, not 200 years as USA but we need to give system some tome, there is a better tomorrow. This is what makes me live with corruption, the hope for a better tomorrow then under a dictatorship which takes away decade of our national development and our future and we end up at the beginning.
Let’s live with corruption for a transparent tomorrow and let the system refine itself while working as a pressure group to force leadership make right decisions but still giving them a chance rather then killing the machanism itself for idealism.