Corruption at root of Arab protests, Dubai Police chief says

Dahi Khalfan Tamim says graft remains a major priority in Dubai and across MENA
Corruption at root of Arab protests, Dubai Police chief says
Lieutenant General Dahi Khalfan Tamim has made combating graft one of the key priorities of his leadership of Dubai’s police force,
By Ed Attwood
Tue 12 Jul 2011 04:43 PM

Corruption carried out by public officials is one of the main causes of the Arab spring protests that have rocked the region this year, according to Dubai’s police chief.

Lieutenant General Dahi Khalfan Tamim has made combating graft one of the key priorities of his leadership of Dubai’s police force, a drive that has seen several senior officials jailed.

“Corruption is and has been our priority and it is a vital issue in the Arab world too,” Lt General Tamim told Arabian Business in an exclusive interview. “There has been an unprecedented backlash because of the spread of corruption in these countries, and these protests in the street are the outcome of decades of rampant corruption - this is what we have been hearing from stories emerging from those countries.

“I wish that every government official would realize the fact that corruption is not a curse that will chase him only, but also will drag others along with him.”

The police chief said that corruption was behind much of the political and social ills that led Tunisians to overthrow their long-serving leader, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.

In Egypt, many officials from the former ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) are in jail waiting for graft allegations to be tried.

He also indicated that the UAE was aiming to improve on its recent high placing in the World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index, which placed the country 13th worldwide for its adherence to the rule of law, above the US.

“We will strive for the number-one position in that index,” Lt Gen Tamim said. “Sheikh Mohammed is to send delegates to the number one country to see the best practices there and that will be our next challenge.”

 Sweden and Norway topped this year’s index, with New Zealand close behind.

The full interview with Lt General Tamim will be published in Arabian Business magazine on 31 July.

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