To Multi-Nationals Particularly…

By: Fahed Khitan

تم نشره في Mon 2 May / May 2016. 10:01 PM
  • Fahed Khitan

After the House of Appointed Senate passed the Constitutional Amendments this week, to be followed with legislative amendments in relation to multi-nationals running for public offices or their ministerial appointment, they are now eligible —with their other nationalities intact, be appointed in the Upper House, without constraints, and run for Parliamentary memberships.

Not much is known about the number of Jordanians with other nationalities, as they have never been surveyed; it may be suitable for such a census to be conducted at this time, as to touch on whether or not this huge debate on the legality of multi-nationals in public offices is at all worth the attention it aggregated.

Moreover, it would be beneficial to realise the percentage of multi-nationals among candidates for the next parliamentary elections, and their share in public offices as well as in the Senate, post the elections; maybe figure out how hindering the issue really was to those inclined to partake in the political sphere, in terms of scale.

But after the right of this particular segment of society in this regard has been constitutionalised, is it really suitable to legally obligate candidates to disclose their nationalities —whether or not they have other passports?

Some view this to be discriminatively contradictory to constitutional rights. But let us view this from the angle of ethics and politics. In the more ancient democracies, even adolescent ones, electors have the right to know every single detail about the lives of their candidates, their professional and personal lives, as well as their health conditions. In some countries, this goes beyond to digging up their private affairs, relationships, and their pasts. Should it somehow occur that a candidate had been keeping a part of their life tucked afar somewhere; parts that have to do with relations to women for example, to the business world, or else, this will be undoubtedly met with a negative reaction from voters, and may cause the candidate to drop out of the race.

Notably, nobody is debating one’s right to carry a second nationality when running for elections or to be appointed officially; this right is now guarded by the constitution. But, since carrying another nationality has become legal now for those who want to engage in the public life, what is so scary about coming forward with this particular piece of information?

Will it affect their share of the votes? Perhaps, if one would deliberated seal the truth, yes! But if a candidate would come forward with it in hand, would it not add to their credibility?

More so, it is possible “popular opinion” in this regard may have been misrepresented, inaccurately by the media; people may not be so “against” it, after all.

Who knows, multi-nationality maybe become an advantage to candidates in the eyes of their electors; either as an enabling means to sustaining Jordan’s interests and supporting them in his “second home”, or harness direct services provided to their electoral base to ease their immigration procedures in the MPs “other” country. Many youths dream about immigration, do they not comprise a strong basis to win elections?!