Former interior minister Nouhad Machnouk said yesterday that he did not know what ammonium nitrate is, raising some doubts about the worst of the situation, that of ministers incompetent to accomplish their most basic mission, be at the service of the population. Another doubt is also raised, that of the reality of power. It is not the ministers or the government who run this country and who pushed it into the current crisis but in reality, an armada of officials of the first category and below who decide.

A terrible confession of helplessness …

Far away is the image of the man parading forcefully past the Internal Security Forces when he was just appointed. Far away is the man who banged his fist on the table to fight Daesh terrorism. It was only a facade, a ceremonial minister, and the reality is that which appears today, a man devoid of power, named as an extra and appearing like a great farce which one could well laugh at, if it had not been for not resulted in drama.

Ministers pass, governments resign, whether national unity or not, presidents pass aside that of the perch, but just like him in the end, these officials who decide everything stay and sometimes pay themselves the luxury of living well beyond the emoluments intended for them.

There is also no doubt about this lifestyle well beyond their salaries, that of corruption often accompanying decisions which are just as absurd as they are harmful, like the ammonium nitrate left behind until it ends in the tragedy that saw on August 4, 2020, a year to a few days, institutions unable to fulfill their respective rights as private interest takes precedence over general interest.

They did not even hide it before this almost insolent lifestyle, cigar in mouth, beautiful girls probably mistresses next to them or hidden girls, illegitimate, adulterous, like an open secret, grandiose marriages to the tune of princesses and princes and so on. And before the crisis, as soon as we pointed it out and wondered about the origin of the funds necessary for this luxury display, they went so far as to claim that we were jealous of them, as if simply asking what one does not steal was shameful.

What good in the end even have a government, when the role of a minister ultimately is not to control his ministry, he leaves this mission to his directors general inherited from his predecessors, but to be at the head of an institution and above all to vote in the Council of Ministers. A minister, in the end, is only a voice comfortably seated on a comfortable folding seat in the government who often gives an opinion without knowing about the subject just as he does not know the work for which he is responsible, just like Nouhad Machouk but also just like many others. How can one claim that a finance minister has, for example, done what is necessary when we come to the current economic crisis? They are there only for the brawl between political poles and to perpetuate a system of massive corruption today at the end of its breath, and not to work for the public good.

A government? Not even worth it in the end …

Some complain about the lack of prerogatives of such and such an institution, but in the end, it is clear that this is general, since the executive does not come from the process of a democratic choice. The concept of consensual democracy in Lebanon is ultimately a lie that has made us drink to the dregs.

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