A team from the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) entered parliament today with a court order to obtain financial statements of MPs.
A Majlis media official confirmed that the ACC team was working in parliament while the financial statements were available from the Ethics Committee.
ACC Chair Hassan Luthfy told Minivan News today that the commission obtained a court order from the Criminal Court last night and the team was sent in this morning.
“We hoped to get [the statements] legally but no solution was found through discussions with parliament,” he said.
Luthfy explained that the ACC was investigating allegations of corruption and bribery involving MPs after receiving a number of complaints.
Luthfy stressed that as “these are only allegations” he could not divulge further details or identify which MPs were involved since “it could violate their privileges.”
The ACC chair however revealed that the commission had received “about two to four complaints” regarding MPs.
In April this year, parliament reached an impasse on public declaration of assets by MPs after voting against a proposal by the Ethics Committee to not make the information available unless ordered by a court of law.
When MPs voted against the proposal 34 to 24, Deputy Speaker Ahmed Nazim declared the matter “void.”
“However, the Secretary General’s request for counsel on this matter has not been decided one way or the other,” he said at the time. “So the Secretary General will go ahead with it according to the rules of procedure.”
The Secretary-General had asked the Ethics Committee to determine whether MPs’ financial statements should be released to other state institutions upon request.
Secretary General Ahmed Mohamed confirmed to Minivan News that the requested financial statements and documents were provided to the ACC team before the court order expired at 3:00pm today.
According to Article 76 of the constitution, “Every member shall annually submit to the Secretary General of the People’s Majlis a statement of all property and monies owned by him, business interests and liabilities. Such declarations shall include the details of any other employment and obligations of such employment.”