Ministers who fell through the cracks

تم نشره في Wed 4 June / Jun 2014. 07:27 PM - آخر تعديل في Wed 4 June / Jun 2014. 07:28 PM

By Muhammad Aburumman

One of the biggest misperceptions about the second government of Dr. Abdullah Esnour is the saying that the cabinet acts as “one person”.

Perhaps what helps with that is the dominance of the premier and his decisions on media and political debates, while the image of the ministers themselves is hidden behind the scene. But if we look at the ministerial team and evaluate its work, during the last period, we find that the picture is different; the team was done grave injustice when the government was reduced to the PM alone!

Perhaps the obvious example of this is the Minister of Education, Dr. Mohammed Dhunaibat, who attracted much attention and admiration among the elite and the public; he saved the general secondary examination "Tawjihi" with his courageous decisions, and paces bold reform steps for the large imbalances he finds. We hope the summer session of the high school exam will confirm and further his historic and important role.

Ministerial achievement goes beyond that to other ministers who excelled during the last period; they work silently and quietly, with little to no noise. Suffice it to mention here another example; the Minister of Water and Irrigation Hazem Nasser.

This man has taken bold reformist steps and collided with “whales”, through intensive campaigns to stop water violations, and the demolition of illegal wells, which was a dagger in the side of justice, and drained this scare resource we have.

Nasser contributed to the adoption of an amended law for the Water Authority to maximize the penalties for those who attack water resources, including an up-to-five years prison time and a fine of seven thousand dinars ($10,000).

Of course, what we want is for Nasser to provide a remarkable management model in the face of great challenge this year, which is dealing with the water crisis while we stand on the threshold of the summer and the month of Ramadan. We all recall how the water crises in the past years have been very harsh on the provinces and many districts, and how hundreds of thousands of Jordanians suffered from it. Will we be in front of a different scene this time around?

Other ministers’s efforts are of no lesser importance. In the municipalities, we have Dr. Walid al-Masri, who is an expert in this field, enlightened and reform-centric, and has great ambition. Had the budget of the ministry given him more space, we would have found a real difference. However, our hope is pinned on that man as he has an important project, and we will reap in the coming period.

On another hand, we have the calm and collected agriculture minister Dr. Akef al-Zoubi, and other ministers who are working to make a difference in their fields, and it is difficult to mention everyone in this article.

The result here is that there are basic and important areas affecting the lives of citizens where we can make a big difference through ministers who have the competence and courage, who are not corrupt, and who understand the meaning of administration and good governance.

It is unjust, then, that these ministers work is evaluated through the stance of the premier and the credibility of his reform.

If the it is good that this government distanced itself from open conflicts and poles clashes, which occurred with previous governments, our reformists friends’ problem is that they are lying behind the media landscape, and did not form a united group linking their political positions to their career performance, in order to make a similar difference in the political reality.



This article is an edited translation from the Arabic edition.