Pretending is something the Algerian authorities like to do and even though they suck at it they keep pretending again and again and again. Perhaps this is a way for them to perfect that art which we fail to understand. So they pretend that a mummy is actually ruling the country, that the country’s doing fine, that the state’s sovereignty is full, that the press is free in the country, that we are a democracy, that we have judicial independence, that our issues are caused by the foreign hand, etc. They even pretend that they actually care.
The list is long but I need to mention another example which will introduce this post’s topic. The authorities pretend that they value science and research along with the Algerian youths. So they opened universities and institutes everywhere and they created many research laboratories, centres and agencies and they poured loads of money in them. But, as research is more serious than populism and just money, the Algerian supersonic drone lie remained the lie it was in 2014 and Algeria remains far from replacing oil by nanotechnologies and space industry. We even see science charlatans pretending (yes, our authorities are charlatans too) to have discovered a cure for diabetes and be endorsed by TV channels, the health minister and regular Algerians calling them patriotic geniuses (I’ll come back to this topic in another post).
So a few research agencies have been created and one of them, dealing with research in life science, was opened in March 2012 in Bejaia. I don’t know about the other agencies but I heard some interesting things about that one. I could actually have titled this post “PoF Leak: Wasted” because it does include a leak but I didn’t do it for my PoF Leak posts are about fabricated ones and today’s leak is unfortunately real.
The agency hired about 60 young graduates who had been unemployed for some time after having finished university and some of them were lucky enough to get one of those subsidised youths’ jobs (pré–emploi) earning a very low pay (this is to pretend that we have a healthy and productive economy which actually creates jobs). So all these young men and women passed the selection exam and were very motivated to finally start working, I mean having a real job and a decent salary. But they found out there was no research in the agency and almost no activity at all. They had chairs to sit on but no desks, they were put in four rooms (15 in each room) and left alone with absolutely nothing to do. Now, three years later, they do have desks and a few computers with an internet connection so they can at least try to kill time surfing the web. The agency is still doing almost nothing despite having an allocated budget and all. I said almost nothing because the agency’s director keeps
pretending traveling the country and abroad attending conferences and symposiums and what not.
The thing is Gen. Toufik wasn’t Algeria’s only false god as many Algerians become gods and crush everyone around them the minute they are given a bit of power. So the agency’s driver is
asked ordered to use the agency’s car to give driving lessons to the director’s son. The employees are harassed and are controlled thoroughly by the staff on their arrival/departure time despite having nothing to do. The employees seeking other jobs within state offices and therefore needing the director’s authorization face a negative answer and feel like prisoners at work. Three years spent confined with many people and doing nothing endangers these young people’s mental and physical health and let’s not mention their motivation which is long gone.
My point here is not to share the details and I left many unsaid. I’d like to highlight how this youths potential of our country’s is wasted before even being used. Algerians may be young but their potential is no more. The system created by the authorities succeeded in making no difference between them who are in their twenties and thirties and the 79 yo mummy. Tab jnanhoum all of them. Which is a pity and, yes, a disaster.
And these young men and women are afraid to complain. They have families and responsibilities and they need the salary that is given to them. They also know that the judiciary system is not independent, that the administration is not neutral. They don’t have the connections others have. And they are not ready to waste the few they have on an action which they believe has little chances of success even though they are aware that they are wasting their youth, energy and health. These men and women and a big part of the population face the same dilemma and this is why they do not hit the streets and do not block roads like others, who have nothing to lose and everything to gain, do.
This is why the system still holds and this is why we are wasted and they keep pretending.