It’s a bad title I know but I couldn’t help myself. What is it about politics that drives men to behave so utterly insincerely? In Britian there have been many scandalous issues amongst MP’s, not least the 2009 expenses scandal which shocked the nation as a leak illuminated the fact that many MP’s were effectively “stealing” by claiming ludicrously large sums of money for expenses. Some of these expenses included mortgage payments on second houses, porn bought online by their spouses, killer gel for head louses (not really….. that last one was just because I realised I was rhyming) and even Tony Blair’s little “faux pas” which was that his expenses were “all mistakenly shredded” when he was officially asked to produce them.
However, this latest scandal in the Egyptian Lower House is particularly interesting because, well it’s smacks of intense…..stupidity more than anything else, and is well…..hilarious!
Anwar al Balkimy, an elected representative of the Salafi An Noor Party, became a victim of a carjacking. He appeared in hospital with terrible wounds to his face where mindless thugs, who stole $16,000 and his car, gave him a severe beating. He was shown on TV with his whole face bandaged up, with only his eyes and beard showing.
This of course is very sad and caused uproar when it was first announced. The problem of carjackings in Egypt has grown substantially since the revolution last year. An old man who drives a taxi for my family was beaten up although he managed to remove a component from his engine to prevent the thugs stealing his livelihood. My sister in law was mugged just outside our house and my wife has not driven out by herself after dark for the past few months. Naturally then, the whole city was concerned and this event, this violent mugging of a decent law-abiding God fearing man just showed how vulnerable anybody could be. The police got involved and a large investigation opened with suspects having been rounded up.
“Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.”
- Sir Walter Scott
The problem is that just recently a doctor has appeared on TV and has angrily claimed that this same MP Anwar al Balkimy, was his patient and that bad beating he received was nothing but the usual wounds of recovery after a nose job (cosmetic surgery) which is what the doctor had treated him for. Hilarious!
Now as far as I can tell the story goes that Mr Al Balkimy, who is new to the seedy dark world of secular politics, naively thought that a touch up to his already great looks……………..would take a few hours and he’d be back to work. On realising that the wounds would give him away, he invented the lie about being carjacked. The lie, as they tend to do, spun way out of control and ended up involving national TV, radio, newspapers and public debate because of the issue of carjacking, which caught the attention of his surgeon.
To add to this comedy, the public debate is now on whether the doctor had the right to break his patient’s confidentiality by publically mentioning the surgery at all and also the undeniable fact that the party that Anwar al Balkimy MP represents are against cosmetic surgery on principle of religious grounds which their party is founded on.
Needless to say he has been sacked.
Oh dear. This is a “blow” for his party who are now going to get “wiped” by the secularists over this “t-issue”. Most Egyptians I have spoken to feel sorry for him because they say he fell foul of one of the worst traits of Egyptian culture which is, and I quote, “not admitting that you made a mistake and instead covering it up with a lie”. I told them, believe me it’s not just Egyptians, though after living here and dealing with servicemen and shopkeepers, I can see just what they mean.
I guess this is the last time he will be “running” for parliament. I’m sure he nose better now.