Lebanese Parliamentarian Just Revealed: Banking Secrecy Law Unreliable

As the revolution has been demanding lifting banking secrecy on the government members, Member of Parliament Paula Yacoubian addressed this week, in a three-part video posted to her official Instagram page, the Lifting Banking Secrecy, the truth behind the development of this law, as well as its true meaning, consequences, and scope.

She explained that this law needed to be amended and reviewed in order to encompass all forms of theft and corruption, and the Lebanese parliament resisted and abstained to update it.

It is important to note that Yacoubian, who had participated in a street protest against her government several weeks ago before the revolution, made it very clear in a post from October 22, 2019, on her Instagram page, that she would not be taking part in the current protests on the streets. 

She stated that these public spaces of protest are for the “people to express their demands and voice their own concerns.”

She further insisted that the “people do not need anyone to lecture them or speak on their behalf,” and that she would be back to expose “the truth, and all circulating rumors throughout this period.”

In her video, she explains that she herself, and fellow Parliamentarian Sami Gemayel submitted the law of Lifting Banking Secrecy for revision last June 2019. 

She stated, “Often enough, people who have stolen money do not put it in their own names, they put this money behind fronts such as companies, their political parties, third parties, etc.”

She went on to outline that the law was not passed, even after ongoing debates in Parliament where she attributed the failure in the passing of this law to the members of Parliament who saw it as a “conspiracy against Lebanon” as well as a violation.

She herself made it very clear that she has voted in favor of this law and has also lifted banking secrecy off her own personal accounts even prior to running for elections. 

In her concluding statements, she emphasized: “This is exactly what happened concerning this law. It was rejected by some of the very people who claim they wanted it to pass in the first place.”

On the subject of returning stolen funds, Yacoubian called this demand “the dream of every Lebanese citizen since the end of the Lebanese Civil War.”

But, she makes it very clear that the passing of this law is ultimately “impossible” and stressing making that the politicians in question would “never” reveal the amounts they have stolen, and “return this money to the people.”

On this point, Yacoubian encourages the Lebanese general public to take a moment and “honestly think about it.” She goes on to say, “there is absolutely no way that they are not bluffing when they say this law will enter into effect,” insisting that they are belittling Lebanese people by making this promise.

Kataeb | Zawya

Member of Parliament since 2018, and prominent Lebanese journalist and television personality since the mid-nineties, Paula Yacoubian has established herself as a people favorite since winning the elections.

Often being candid on her social media platforms and across her speeches and official addresses, Yacoubian made it now a point to discuss publicly with the people the most recent demand of the protesters across the country, warning them about the flaws of the existing law. 

“When I became a politician, I realized how deep the rot lies in Lebanon. My country is crippled by the disease of sectarianism, which has slowed its march towards a civic and modern form of government,” she wrote in The National, on June 6, 2019, in the section Opinion. 

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