Jordan elections slogans “vague and unimpressive”

October 18, 2010
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Elections slogans overwhelm Amman - Jordan Times

From fighting corruption to liberating Iraq and Palestine to achieving reform in the Kingdom, candidates for Jordan’s parliament are making all sorts of promises in their efforts to woo voters in the November 9 elections, a local daily reported.

Since the campaign season began last week, parliamentary hopefuls have raced to reserve corners, traffic lights and street islands to post their posters and banners, on which they pose, in the words of one citizen, “like movie stars” alongside slogans that some voters said are simply not realistic.

Several citizens told The Jordan Times that the candidates’ slogans are mostly irrelevant or vague, while some of them have no messages and only clichés.

“The slogans are not convincing,” said Mahmoud Ghoul. “I will not vote for a candidate because of his/her slogan. If I vote, I will choose someone well-known for his activities and someone with a good resume in public service,” the 24-year-old told the Amman-based daily.

Mohammad Sarsak, a human rights activist, agreed with Ghoul. “Candidates are competing with their photos rather than strong and relevant slogans, and some of their promises cannot be even implemented by the United Nations,” Sarsak said, citing one candidate’s slogan: “Towards liberating Iraq”.

None of the slogans address citizens’ concerns, he said.

“As a citizen, I want realistic calls for change, and I want them to address issues related to improving salaries and better living conditions for Jordanians.”

He also said that some of the candidates’ posters block traffic signs and lights, an act he terms “irresponsible.”

Others said the slogans were “archaic” with candidates “recycling stale promises.”

“The slogans are a repeat and we heard them in previous elections,” 27-year-old Lana Qaddoumi said. “Slogans should be relevant and reflect the needs of the community.”

Even the faces of the candidates vying for the Lower House’s 120 seats are the same, said Manar Mahafzah.

“The same people who contested in the 2007 elections are running in the upcoming polls, and the majority of them are using the same words that have nothing to do with reality,” Mahafzah said. “Some of the slogans are not even comprehensible.”

Candidates are only “littering the streets” with their hundreds of posters, said Maya Hourani.

Political analyst Mohammad Abu Rumman dismissed the slogans as “vague”.

“Even schoolchildren do not believe the majority of candidates’ slogans,” Abu Rumman, a columnist at Al Ghad newspaper, said. “They are irrational and do not address the educated people of Jordan.”

         

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About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Career
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
Education
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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