New Parliament Offers Little Hope For Solving Algeria's Deep Crisis

Article Summary
The election of a new Algerian parliament is no cause for celebration, writes Shaabran Zarrouk, as it will likely not live up to expectations for reform. Women may be present in the assembly, but only due to quotas guaranteering the appearance of women’s rights. Nepotism and greed within the politcal culture are as strong as ever, he says.

Algerians will apparently once again be disappointed, as the long awaited paradigm shift brought on by a change in the composition of the People’s National Assembly will not live up to expectations. Further, it seems like this round will be even worse than previous assemblies.
It is clear that the majority of the future parliament will be made up of former MPs who have already proven that they pay no heed to the concerns of their citizens. They have made it clear that they only seek to expand their own investments and double their fortunes. The new parliament will include female MPs, this is true. However, this is a mere formality that was imposed by a quota system. These female MPs, who come from disadvantaged political backgrounds, will only serve to decorate the National Assembly and their inclusion will be an excuse to boast of the rights of women in Algeria.

The emerging new candidates have for the most part defected from old political parties over disagreements relating to the sharing of revenues. They have formed their new movements under the banner of nepotism, so the future parliament will thus be spoiled by privilege seeking and corruption.

Few are the candidates who both control wealth while actually seeking to serve the country and the people. Businessmen have realized that it is necessary to access the centers of decision-making to preserve their interests and increase their money.

The government has opened up the elections to all parties and individuals. The strangest thing is that all Algerian political parties on the Algerian arena warn against the risks that citizens face in terms of employment, health and housing, among other issues, while their practices on the ground reflect exactly the opposite type of discourse. Family, personal interests and nepotism remain at the core of decision-making.

We will certainly fail in confronting our our current dilemma if we continue to support incompetent and corrupt leadership. Algeria is plagued by deep crises and a corrupt and irreparable political game. 

Found in: women's quotas, nepotism, corruption, algerian political reform, algerian parliamentary elections

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