VOA, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Although a natural disaster, the effects of the earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria were only exacerbated by political corruption and negligence. The corruption seen in the construction industry has resulted in a lack of proper building standards and safety regulations.

How corruption in Turkey made the earthquake worse

The recent earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria on February 10 was a tragic event that has claimed hundreds of lives and left thousands injured and homeless. While earthquakes are natural disasters that are beyond human control, the extent of the damage caused by the earthquake in Turkey was exacerbated by political corruption and negligence.

In Turkey, corruption and political influence have been major factors in the construction industry, which has led to a lack of proper building standards and safety regulations. The government’s failure to enforce building codes and safety regulations has resulted in the construction of buildings that are structurally unsound and vulnerable to collapse in the event of an earthquake. This was clearly evident in the recent earthquake, where many buildings collapsed, trapping and killing people inside. 

Moreover, the Turkish government’s response to the earthquake has been criticized for its inefficiency and lack of preparedness. Despite the fact that earthquakes are a common occurrence in Turkey, the government has not taken adequate measures to ensure that the necessary infrastructure is in place to respond to such disasters. The lack of resources, trained personnel, and equipment has made it difficult for rescue and relief efforts to be carried out effectively, further worsening the situation. 

The corruption in the construction industry has been fueled by the government’s desire for rapid development and economic growth, as well as the involvement of politicians and officials who benefit from kickbacks and bribes. This has led to the construction of buildings without proper oversight or consideration for safety, putting people’s lives at risk. In fact, many of the buildings that collapsed in the recent earthquake were found to have been constructed illegally or without proper permits

In addition to the corruption in the construction industry, political corruption has also impacted the government’s response to the earthquake. President Erdogan’s administration has been criticized for diverting resources and funds away from disaster relief and towards political campaigns and other self-serving projects. This has made it difficult for relief efforts to be carried out effectively, exacerbating the suffering of those affected by the earthquake. 

The inefficacy of the Turkish government has led to unnecessary casualties, and left those in the U.S. shaken. With around 350,000 Turkish immigrants living in the United States currently, many with relatives still in Turkey, this earthquake has seen loss like never before. The U.S. has already pledged $85 million in aid to Turkey, and this money will hopefully provide some relief for those who are suffering.

The failure to enforce building standards, lack of preparedness, and diversion of resources and funds for self-serving purposes have all contributed to the tragic loss of life and devastation caused by the earthquake. It is crucial that the Turkish government takes immediate action to address these issues and ensure that the necessary measures are in place to prevent similar disasters from occurring in the future.

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