Why Doesn’t President Serzh Sargsyan Sack Crooked And Inept Official

Edik Baghdasaryan

[ 2010/09/13 | 16:30 ]

This question is frequently posed by various political figures and
players, especially those hailing from the ruling Republican Party.

They just cannot understand how numerous officials, caught with their
hands in the state “cookie jar” or found to be involved in various
nefarious affairs, remain unscathed, working at their old job, often
seen rubbing shoulders with President Sargsyan.

Every time the RoA Control Chamber issues a report or study, you can
bet there are several top officials, including ministers, that should
be sacked, if not brought up on criminal charges as well.

Let’s merely recall the millions squandered recently by the Ministry
of Culture. A portion of the funds has never been recovered and I
believe the government can kiss that money “bye-bye”. Nevertheless
Minister Hasmik Poghosyan continues at her post. Can anyone explain why
President Sargsyan hasn’t dismissed her for such inadequate oversight?

Last week the Prosecutor General’s Office issued a statement that
criminal cases had been initiated against companies responsible for
clean-up work on the shores of Lake Sevan. The work contract was won
by three companies in the normal manner – the deal was fixed from the
start. The companies went too far though and pocketed a chunk of the
money rather than doing the assigned job.

Later, we find out that officials from the Ministry of Nature
Protection signed off on the work reports as if all was going fine.

Another taxpayer rip-off swept under the rug by corrupt officials.

Let’s face it; you don’t actually believe that all this was done
without bribes being handed out

One month ago the chief and his deputy at the Environmental
Inspectorate at this same Ministry were charged with bribe taking.

They’ve been taking bribes for years. This is how it works when
inspectorate employees go around to various places of business making
inspections – palms get greased.

The deputy ministers knew what was going on and, of course, so did the
minister. Naturally, they got their share of the “take”; it couldn’t
be otherwise. During the past months, evidence of illegal logging
and tree cutting in Armenia’s remaining forests has been recorded
and the ministry merely makes a daily note.

What is compelling President Sargsyan from keeping the Nature Minister
in office? Is it that President Sargsyan can’t run the country without
this minister? There is no logical answer to this frequently asked

A possible explanation occurred years ago when Serzh Sargsyan was
Armenia’s Minister of Defense. This reporter was talking with an
army general. We were discussing certain abuses linked to another top
officer, General Yuri Khachaturov. I asked why it was that Minister
Sargsyan didn’t remove Khachaturov for misconduct. The general I was
talking with categorically retorted, “Serzh Sargsyan doesn’t sacrifice
his people.”

Fine; but if that’s the case why should the public suffer? Maybe this
is what President Sargsyan ponders as he walks alone on the shores
of Sevan.

From: A. Papazian


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