Prosecuting Politicians Ex Facto for Corruption and Gross Negligence

Human rights is yet another subject à la mode: they only matter according to the mood of the moment, and according to the celebrity du jour that espouses it. Otherwise, how can one explain the defence of the human rights of paedophiles, serial killers, rapists, terrorists and corrupt politicians in detriment of the rights of the common citizen?

To be fair, there are many concerned celebs who address the UN to talk about poverty (and Human Rights) but as long as their main goal is to raise funds, and awareness, they will never see the impact their efforts could truly have. That strong impact will only be felt the day politicians start paying for their actions ex facto. Let's ask a few serious questions:

  • When a government lets its citizens living in the slums with no running water, no sanitization, no asphalted side-walks, no electricity for most part of the day and night – is this a violation of their human rights?  
  • When a government persecutes and executes citizens for their political ideology and affiliation – is this a violation of their human rights? 
  • When government elites, and their families, keep slaves (whom they even take with them when they travel abroad, and then retain their passports) – is this a violation of human rights? 
  • When there's no food in a country because the government elites manipulate the food market, leaving thus the people to practically starve – is this a violation of the people's human rights? 
  • When the people's capital is held captive in a country because the ruling elites use foreign currency in their dealings with terrorists and in their corruption activities with Western Bankers – is this a violation of fundamental rights? 
  • When political leaders allow foreigners to use 4-year old babies to work in cobalt mines for profit, in spite of national legislation against child labour – is this a violation of children's rights? 

The answer to these questions is a resounding YES. The Fight for Human Rights started in order to protect common people – those who proposed themselves to do it lost focus, sold themselves out and now undermine the common people for self-profit.

It's time to rewind the whole film. 

Prima Facie Cases

Corruption is considered a crime in itself; but corrosive corruption should be prosecuted as both corruption and gross negligence.

When the ICC attempted to go after African Leaders, the “world” screamed bias. One close glance at most of Africa, at the lives of most common Africans, and it's easy to establish a government's “lack of slight diligence or care” or “a conscious, voluntary act or omission in reckless disregard of a legal duty” (duty to serve and protect the citizens), opening thus the doors to build a case based on evidence “sufficient to establish a fact or raise a presumption (unless disproved or rebutted)” - but quite frankly, it is very hard to disprove or rebut such a blatant evidence of the level of negligence that most African people have been subjected to since the Independence Period.

Having said this, the ICC should give it another go from a different angle: Crimes Against Humanity for having been established that the citizens of most African nations have been persistent and consistently grossly neglected, with their rights blatant and persistently violated. According to a UN report “Aut dedere aut judicare”, States have the Obligation to Investigate within the context of the fight against impunity (for more details read here); therefore, politics can no longer come before ethics and justice.

Crimes Against Humanity

Usually, when we speak of crimes against humanity we refer to inhumane acts (e.g. torture, enslavement, cruel treatment, institutionalised discrimination; ethnic, racial or religious persecution) but the scope of inhumane acts must now be broadened to include a Government's Gross Negligence towards its citizens.

Most African states are rich in natural resources, of whichever description, but unfortunately in most cases the people do not benefit from those riches: the elites and foreign entities do. African leaders, their families and friends, get richer at the expense of the common citizen, who lives in utter misery. Aid funds are sent to African nations to build houses for individuals living in miserable conditions, in the slums, but that money almost never reaches its destination and the affordable housing is not built. Notwithstanding the construction of villas, worth millions of dollars, continue to sprout in cities like Maputo and Luanda – to cater the so-called elites, even though there aren't that many to occupy those houses. This is only possible due to the scourge of corrosive corruption.

The African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption has provided the necessary tools to go after the corrupt African leaders, and cooperate with international authorities to prosecute them too – why isn't the law being enforced?

We need to start a new debate: Human Rights are more than Women's rights, it is not Gay Rights, it is certainly not Terrorists' rights. Human Rights is about upholding the basic rights, in the context of Human Development, conferred to Human Beings in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

  • All Human Beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights (Art. 1)
  • Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person (Art. 3)
  • No one shall be held in slavery or in servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms. (Art. 4)
  • No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment (Art. 5)
  • Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association. (Art. 20[1])
  • Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care (..). (Art. 25)

The facts are clear. The evidence is easy to gather. Crimes against Human Beings are openly being committed. The Law is clear, so it's time to Open long due Precedents and prosecute grossly negligent politicians.

(Jonathan W. Penn Contributed to this article)

(Image: Boy sitting over open sewer in Kibera Slum, Nairobi[ed] - Google Images)

[The views expressed in this publication are solely those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Dissecting Society]


  1. True, we need to redirect our attention to what really matters, but instead the right and the left are killing each other in the streets while children play in the filth! What is wrong with us? Let's fight the good fight instead!

  2. For countless years the moral righteous have denounced corrupt practices: injustice in courts; pity given to criminals but not to victims; greedy and dictatorial governments. Yet the situation does not change. Moralists cannot capture the will of the people to overthrow a corrupt regime. The people lack a strong will and that is why they are governed and abused by corrupt others who do have strong wills. Governments are armed and usually the citizens are not and this leads to dominance by use of force. It seems that it is the innate nature of politicians to despise the populace and promise them anything but never bother to deliver: as what are the consequences? A population only follows and believes in more promises. It is easy to do nothing when in poverty and fear of being bashed, killed, or incarcerated is the daily reality. It seems that the true psychology of nearly all humans both leaders and the led, is that, whatever they both publically say, they despise victims as weak and cower to those who apply force and deceit.

    The Human Rights declarations of the United Nations mean nothing when most member nations disregard them. Only an independent United Nations army to enforce the rules on nations would have an effect and no such army (outside of minor role Peace Keepers) would ever be allowed to exist and dominate nations. Hundreds of member nations are Moslem and the Koran promotes slavery and abuse of infidels, and such nations can outvote minorities who want a better world. Those in Power define what is and isn’t abuse. The United Nations is a weak organisation and all nations know it. As an unpleasant reality has been extant for many years, I see that such a harsh reality will continue on, as it is not what voices are raised against it: but what are the FORCES that a raised against it – that can lead to make a physical change? This planet has corrupt people in power and hypothetically, if aliens came down, that would be a FORCE to make changes, but then all would become only the morals, if any, of a foreign forceful group of beings. So much for humanity that cannot clean its own house. Fight the Good Fight, but if you expect a powerful result you would need a powerful reason and indisputable evidence that those who rule have changed to forcefully demand justice before profit, as it is they who are the rules in reality.

    1. Stephen, aliens? I wonder what their price would be in return.

  3. Why only politicians? Bureaucrats are no less responsible. When the system is corrupt, everything gets corrupted from top to bottom and the weak pay the price.

  4. We are going through a period in human history when a serious clean up of the political system is urgently required; but who will do it when most are corrupt? I am not saying it is impossible, personally I think it is feasible but it will take a lot of time and effort. The result will be beautiful but the process will most certainly be ugly. Brava, Max!

  5. The intention is good but question is who is going after these rotten politicians? The ICC focuses more on crimes of war though they claim to go after crimes against humanity! But what do they understand as crimes against humanity: children left to die of disease and hunger? Don't think so. You have good principles Max but I don't see how this can be achieved, or maybe I'm just too disappointed by life!

  6. It seems to me that the various declarations of "human rights" provide a prescription for raging and grandstanding, but I really doubt that they do anyone any direct good. As with Ramana, I think you are up against human nature in a much broader sense and not simply dealing with politicians.


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