Saudi Arabia’s public prosecutor has announced a 32-year prison sentence and a fine of 9 million riyals for five officials convicted of corruption in a new incident proving that corruption is rampant in the kingdom.
According to the official news agency (SPA), the defendants were convicted on several charges; including “wasting public funds, the disposal of government property, trading in government function, and illicit enrichment.”
The prosecution issued against the convicts “a total of sentences exceeding 32 years, financial penalties exceeding nine million riyals (about $2.5 million), and the confiscation of funds in their personal bank accounts.”
According to the same source, among those convicted “one official (unnamed) arrested in the act of receiving bribes, sentenced to 12 years imprisonment, and a fine exceeding one million riyals (about 266 thousand dollars).”
Under Saudi law, these provisions are preliminary and subject to appeal. Courts in Saudi Arabia usually do not release much details of their hearings, do not broadcast them, and do not announce the names of defendants in cases.
A recent study conducted by the National Anti-Corruption Commission “Integrity” showed that Saudis are worried about the prevalence of corruption in government institutions and their demands to punish the corrupt has become more urgent.
The study revealed that 62.91 percent of employees put the nepotism at the top of the pyramid of corruption in government institutions, followed by indifference to work 19.36 percent, and bribery and appropriation of embezzlement and supply the list of corruption among Saudis.
Regulators have already monitored dozens of financial and administrative violations in a medical city (not affiliated with the Ministry of Health), most notably the violation of the contents of eight orders, decrees, decisions, regulations and approved regulations, and the adoption of eight internal regulations of its own unapproved, and work with 10 salary scales, and the payment of allowances.
The irregularities included the payment of salaries and financial benefits amounts to some influential managers exceeding the basic salary of some, for example, the salary of a worker in the institution jumped from 5400 riyals in the year of appointment in 2000 to 44,671 riyals in 2017, that is, her salary increased 39,271 riyals in 14 years.
In a recent report, regulators monitored an annual bonus of between two and four times, and revealed an arithmetic error in the collection of allowances when auditing the accounts of January 2017, which resulted in significant differences between salaries, allowances and gross salary. This resulted in the payment of 509,888 riyals in excess of 51 employees.
Corruption is the first enemy of development in any society, and it is difficult to draw any bright reality in the presence of that scourge, which is spreading like cancer in society, which is happening in the Kingdom due to House of Saud crimes and corruption.