Fatah official alleges PA ministers unaware of activities in own ministries

Palestinian official says Tawfiq al-Tirawi making allegations for ‘political reasons.'

February 26, 2018 19:03
1 minute read.
Tawfiq Tirawi speaks during a news conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah

Tawfiq Tirawi speaks during a news conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Fatah Central Committee member Tawfiq al-Tirawi has called on the Palestinian Authority’s top leadership to fire ministers from the PA government who “do not know what is happening” in their ministries.

Tirawi has often criticized PA institutions. Last month, he filed a complaint with the PA Attorney-General’s Office against the PA security forces for allegedly wiretapping his phone.

“[I] call on President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, who I praise for his efforts, to replace ministers who have been unable to appropriately put to work their important ministries,” Tirawi said, according to a statement on his official website on Sunday.

“Some ministers do not know what is happening in their ministries and are busy with their personal agendas and privileges... [I] condemn the administrative corruption, favoritism and nepotism inside these ministries.”

Tirawi, a former PA General Intelligence Services chief, did not name any specific ministers or ministries.

When contacted on Monday, Tirawi said he did not want to identify the ministers he thinks should be fired. However, he said if a cabinet reshuffle does not take place soon, he will reveal their names.
A PA government spokesman did not respond to a request for comment.

But a Palestinian official who agreed to speak on the condition of anonymity accused Tirawi of making the allegations against the government ministers for “political reasons.”

“Tirawi is not actually interested in increasing transparency, fighting corruption and improving the government’s performance. He made the statement yesterday for personal interests and political reasons,” the official said in a phone call.

In July 2017, Shawqi Essa, a former PA social affairs minister, also accused the PA of corruption and empowering corrupt officials.

According to a poll conducted by the Palestinian Center Survey and Policy Research in December 2017, 77% of Palestinians believe corruption exists in PA institutions. In the same poll, 20% of Palestinians said the most serious problem confronting Palestinian society was the spread of corruption.

Tariq Dana, a policy adviser at Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network, wrote in 2010 that corruption in the Palestinian territories is “embedded in the underlying power structure that governs the Palestinian political system.” He argued that a “structural response” that involves the entire Palestinian political system is required to root it out.

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