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24 March, 2019
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Probe on a probe finding

Toxic politics keep rehashing old ways at the expense of public institutions

Eleni Xenou

Eleni Xenou

It was to be expected that the president of the Republic would stand by the finance minister, emphasizing that he still has faith in him, following the finding of the co-op investigative committee.

And the reason why it was so expected of course has nothing to do with the logic offered by the president himself. It has everything to do with an eroded and poor mentality with which rulers at the top are building their careers at our expense, so that they can use political trickery to cover up their complicity and serve special interests, no matter how big or small.

It goes without saying that these special interests are so far away from the so called public interest. And so it was to be expected just as much as it was expected that the rest of the political leaders would “revolt” calling on Finance Minister Harris Georgiades to resign so that they could use this finding for political gain. And one does not need reminding that similar things went on in the past with other findings, i.e., the Polyviou probe into the Mari explosion.

Dog and pony show

And the reason is obvious: probes are put together and dismantled just for the show. The findings have no value whatsoever except when they get exploited by the opposition in order to weaken political opponents and help the masses blow off steam without any real substance, just like a firecracker.

And after the firecracker dies out, we all sit quietly in our little corner and swallow without chewing this “necessary evil” called lack of consequence.

But if we are to maintain a shred of grey matter and keep it clean from toxic politics and the stuff being tossed at us by those on the political stage, then we better focus on the obvious and utilize our political thought process and not let it be reduced to spin just because politicians arrogantly try to keep us in the dark.

The stance taken by the president of the Republic as well as the finance minister himself, who made a point to draw a distinction between political blame and responsibility, proves only one thing: there is nobody with guts in this pitiful political system to behave like a true politician and not a career politician.

There is nobody with guts in this pitiful political system to behave like a true politician and not a career politician

Someone, who would respect the institutions and stop pandering to the masses at the expense of the public’s intelligence. Because when an independent committee is tasked with investigating the biggest financial scandals in our country, it shouldn’t be up to political pundits to use their discretion in interpreting or misinterpreting the finding but they ought to show respect to the institutions and also protect them.

They should learn to appreciate that these findings are not just a bunch of papers to be locked away in a dusty drawer but a serious probe that has practical value in favour of the public’s interest.

This practical value is not just “exemplary punishment for the guilty” as political opponents will often say (even though they never applied this principle on themselves) but a recognition of the value of political consequence as a starting point, where a new political culture will put an end to rehashing the same old habits that led us to the institutional failure in the first place.

The government reaction while expected but unimaginable along with the hilarious stance of the opposition towards the finding of the investigative committee prove exactly this. That is, those who rule over us have no intent to change ways. On the contrary, they wish to inject their toxic politics and raise it above our insinuations and morals.

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