** Bino accuses ‘influential people’ of hiring web journalists to campaign against ACC
AMMAN (Jordan Times)— The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has referred more than 80 cases involving legal, administrative and financial violations estimated at hundreds of millions of dinars to court during the last 20 months.
Addressing officials and activists from Irbid Governorate, ACC Chairman Samih Bino said that many cases are still under investigation to check whether they involve corruption or not, noting that the commission is currently investigating alleged corruption cases and violations at the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority.
"We are waiting for documents from official bodies we have addressed regarding the cases," Bino said during a meeting held at the Irbid Chamber of Commerce, as quoted by the Jordan News Agency, Petra.
He added that the ACC is still probing files related to the phosphate and potash companies.
The commission was still examining alleged corruption in political parties, in terms of their spending of government financial support, the ACC chief told the meeting.
"The ACC has also opened the so-called shareholding companies file with the help of experts in the field, who have helped us detect several violations," Bino noted.
A total of 700 cases were dismissed because of lack of evidence. Some were proved to be filed out of spite and others were included in the general pardon, according to the commission's chairman, who said the ACC will take legal action against those who are proved to have filed complaints out of spite.
Bino underlined that the commission did not exclude anyone who was proven to be involved in corruption regardless of their position or social status, indicating that exposing "influential people who were proven to be corrupt explains the war waged against the ACC”.
"We were accused to being selective in choosing cases… they hired some journalists, particularly those working at news websites, to campaign against us," he said.
The official underlined that corruption is "less" in Jordan compared to other countries and that wasta (favouritism) and the lack of transparency in appointments are considered the "most common" form of corruption in the Kingdom.
The meeting is part of a series of gatherings the commission is holding across the Kingdom to highlight ACC's objectives and achievements.