No Lebanese person who loves their country stands idle in front of the ongoing. All age groups have participated in the Lebanese revolution against corruption and a government system built on sectarian politics that has destroyed the country over 30 years.
A group of young Lebanese citizens, aching for a better country free of corruption, is using all that’s possible to make it happen.
As most believe today in Lebanon, in order to attain such status, it is important for them at this stage to start by stopping backdoor deals, funds, and commissions.
Accordingly, this youth group called Nehna Al-Watan has just launched from Beirut a petition to Lebanon’s “international friends” asking them to stand with Lebanon in its battle against corruption.
The stated recipients include 20 prominent decision-makers from the World Bank, the IMF, and the UN, and ambassadors of about 13 countries.
Their petition includes these pertinent statements:
Lebanese people insist that all political funding and political actions remain fully and independently supported by citizens living in Lebanon and abroad.
As corruption is the main fuel of this revolution, international financing should be stopped, especially that which increases the debt and adds to the debt burden of the country. These debts do more harm than good and are especially harmful to the Lebanese people.
All foreign financial support should not be sent to Lebanon without sufficient anti-corruption and accountability measures.
The CEDRE commitments and the Capital Investment Plan, regardless of their importance, have massively enriched and entrenched some of the most corrupt elements; all while providing only partial solutions and further indebting Lebanon.
The petition goes on to request Lebanon’s “international friends” to support the anti-corruption movement in Lebanon by initiating the following processes:
A Retroactive financial forensic auditing from 1990 to present. This is to evaluate past governments’ contracts and compare value for money to appraise their fairness, political affiliations, and embezzlement of public funds.
Transparency, public auditing, and public reporting, as overseen by leading domestic and international NGOs, and independent international auditing firms.
A fair process in selecting and financing businesses, avoiding those with any affiliation with public officials, family members of public officials, and political parties.
Efficient project management for improvements in the provision of public services.
The online petition also emphasizes the following:
“It is essential that strong safeguards be in place before any transfer of the above-mentioned funds, or similar funds, to the Government of Lebanon or affiliated entity. We know that not all political parties and people in the political class are corrupt, and we believe in fair due process, but the corruption is widespread and must be addressed immediately.”
“If the Government of Lebanon is not able to comply with such basic transparency and monitoring requirements, we encourage our Friends of Lebanon to allocate such funding to Lebanese NGOs and businessesto implement critical projects, also with proper transparency, management, and reporting requirements, with support from international partners as needed.”
According to Nehna Al-Watan, 10,000 signatories are required for this petition to be addressed to the foreign dignitaries, leaders, and financial decision-makers.
For more about the petition or to sign it, click here.