On the eve of the general election, ruling alliance candidates have disclosed their wealth statements to the EC through affidavits. We are simply taken aback at the vast sums of money and property owned by several lawmakers at the end of their tenure.
It is worthwhile to note that when the present government took office five years ago, the prime minister had stated in parliament that Members of Parliament (MPs) would submit wealth statements on becoming MPs and at the end of their tenure, and that those would be made public. Besides the finance minister and a few others no one had complied with the requirement. It is a standard practice in most democracies because that is deemed as a tool for ensuring transparency and accountability not just on the part of elected representatives but also of the public officials.
We are appalled to find that a section of ministers and MPs have gone from modest means to acquiring riches over the current term in office. Indeed, many have become owners of industries and are on the board of several companies. Now that declared wealth statements are available, the Anti-Corruption Commission should try and investigate how this wealth came to be in the possession of the candidates.
While we are heartened by their declarations which are in the public domain, unless these are placed under scrutiny there is no way knowing whether they would stand the test of verification and auditing