Do Not Expose Corrupt Officials, Saudi Mufti Says

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Saudi Grand Mufti said he opposes exposing corrupt individuals publicly, adding that there are officials who are responsible for punishing those corrupt individuals. “The solution is by raising awareness and warning against corruption and its consequences in this life and the afterlife,” said Sheikh Abdulaziz Al Alshekih during a speech he gave at Dammam University Saturday according to al-Hayat daily.

This comes in contrast to statements he made last year when he called on monitoring bodies to expose corrupt officials, especially those who take bribes. “Those must be stopped and punished,” he said as reported in Okaz daily on May 15, 2012.

This reversal is not surprising because Wahhabi clerics generally oppose criticizing officials in public. “In the Wahhabi worldview, politics became religious when it was concerned with relationship between ruler and ruled, obedience being the only possible relationship, with secret advise by people of knowledge allowed only after praising the ruler for his good deeds,” writes academic Madawi al-Rasheed.

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