Jamil Abu-Bakr, Islamic Action Front, Jordan - AP - 21.6.11
Jamil Abu-Bakr, spokesman for the Islamic Action Front, the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood and Jordan's largest opposition party.
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Jordan's main opposition party on Saturday demanded full independence from government for the country's anti-corruption watchdog.

"The legal and administrative framework that governs the ACC violates Jordan's commitments as a signatory to the UN Convention Against Corruption," the Islamic Action Front (IAF) said in a statement.

The IAF, the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood movement, urged the adoption of legislation that would instead attach the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to the judiciary and guarantee "immunity" for its chief and members.

"The new legislation should also commit the executive to facilitating the ACC's work, to avoid hindering its mission and to remove all legal and administrative obstacles that prevent the interrogation and trial of any government official," the statement said.

The call for the full independence of the ACC came amid charges by the opposition and the press that Prime Minister Marouf Bakhit and members of his present and previous cabinets were involved in corruptive practices that hindered the adoption of political reform.

The fleeing of the convicted tycoon Khalid Shahin to London and later to Frankfurt, and the re-negotiation of a 2007 deal allowing a London-based investor to build a casino on the eastern shore of the Dead Sea were two main cases that have highlighted shortcomings in fighting corruption over the past three months.

Over the past few months Jordan has also witnessed weekly Friday protests demanding the resignation of the cabinet.