DOHA: The Qatar Museums Authority (QMA) has threatened to take legal action against the local daily Al Arab for carrying a column of a Qatari journalist recently that made a number of allegations against it, according to the editor-in-chief of the newspaper.
Ahmed Al Rumaihi said on his Twitter account late last night that he had received two letters from the QMA after Faisal Al Marzouqi’s (pictured) column, threatening to take the newspaper to court.
Meanwhile, a brief statement attributed to the QMA was circulating on the local social media in response to the accusations levelled against it by Al Marzouqi.
The statement, in Arabic and English, threatening legal action against Al Marzouqi, said the QMA was proud of its work.
“The QMA is proud of its work and the important contribution it makes to Qatari society and keeps the best interests of the Qatari people first and foremost at all times.
“The QMA observes the highest level of legal and ethical standards in everything that it does and is subject to regular audit by the State Audit Bureau,” read the statement.
It added: “The QMA is currently considering all options open to it, including legal action, in response to the recent article written by Faisal Al Marzouqi and published by Al Arab newspaper”.
It could not, however, be confirmed by this newspaper if the statement was indeed been issued by the QMA.
Contacted for comment, Al Marzouqi said he would welcome legal action since he has all the documents to substantiate the allegations he has made against the QMA.
“I have enough evidence and there are witnesses as well… However, the QMA would do better to correct their situation before taking legal action,” he said.
If the QMA was serious about its statement, why it didn’t send it out to the media, he wondered. “It was circulated internally to convince their staff that everything was fine.”
He said the objective of writing about the QMA was to not launch personal attacks or malign its image. “The situation there being extremely bad, my intention was to draw public attention to the problem for rectification.” What is worrying about the QMA is that a lobby, and not just a few individuals, is involved in alleged irregularities, he claimed.
Asked why he didn’t raise this issue with senior Qatari and non-Qatari officials of the QMA who are not part of the alleged lobby, Al Marzouqi said he did meet officials but to no avail. “I met the director-general, his assistant, and the heads of human resource and of the tenders division and realized that the situation was beyond redemption.” The Peninsula