Corruption As A Worldwide Problem

Though corruption is a world wide problem, it is one of the gravest problem in Pakistan. Terrorism and extremism are flourishing because of corruption and enemies of Pakistan are exploiting weakness of Pakistan.

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Prevent Corruption or Expose- Embarrass- Punish the Corrupt

Just resolve that you will not succumb to extortion and expose or discourage corrupt elements and practices. Join the Anti Corruption Group at facebook.

Transparency International’s (TI) Global Corruption Barometer Reports from year to year (the Barometer) provide an indication of both the form and extent of corruption, from the viewpoint of citizens from around the world. That explore experience of petty bribery in greater depth than ever before, presenting information on the institutions and public services most affected by bribery, the frequency of bribery, and how much people pay. 

Conclusion – corruption as a worldwide problem

Overall, these results show that people everywhere see corruption as a major problem. While there are differences between countries in the extent to which people experience corruption in their everyday lives, there is a widespread perception that the authority vested in institutions that ought to represent the public interest is, in fact, being abused for private gain.  Some of the important findings are summarized below.

1. Experience of bribery is much more widespread in rest of the world than Europe and North America; police are most often bribed. 
Corruption in many sectors: NGOs, religious bodies, police, civil service, military, education, the legal system/judiciary, media, parliament/legislature, health care and utilities is indicated. Although some improvements are shown but that cannot be taken as an indication that the problem of corruption has been solved.
  • " Bribery is much more widespread in rest of the world than Europe and North America; police are most often bribed.  Corruption in many sectors: NGOs, religious bodies, police, civil service, military, education, the legal system/judiciary, media, parliament, legislature, health care and utilities is indicated"

 2. Government performance in the fight against corruption is not felt adequate in most countries. People around the world tend to be very negative about their government's attempt to fight corruption. Despite relatively good scores on the Corruption Perceptions Index 2006, nearly one in five respondents in the United States and the United Kingdom think that their government encourages corruption rather than fighting it.

3. The perception remains that political parties and parliament are most corrupt, followed by business and police

4. Political and business life are judged more affected by corruption than family life in most countries. Political life is viewed as being most affected by corruption, followed closely by the business environment. 

5. Bribery of police worst the world over: According to the Global Corruption Barometer, bribes are most commonly paid around the world to the police, and are substantially more frequent than to other services. This result presents enormous concerns regarding corruption in processes of law enforcement, particularly when viewed alongside the sector identified as the third most common recipient of bribes: the legal system and judiciary. 

6. Bribery continues to plague people in poorer and transitional countries. Bribery in poor and transitional countries represents a major impediment, one that holds back human development and economic growth. The poorest in society are least able to afford to pay bribes and often must go without basic services as a result. And respondents in several African countries, such as Congo, Nigeria and Senegal, admitted to paying multiple bribes, indicating an even greater burden. 

7. Bribery of Law Enforcers worst the world over
More than half the respondents in Africa who have had contact with the police in the past 12 months paid a bribe. In Latin America approximately one in three respondents who have had contact with the police paid a bribe, and in the NIS, Asia-Pacific and South East Europe the figure varies between 15 and 20 percent. Only a very small proportion of respondents from North America and the EU+ regional groupings have paid a bribe to the police, which is in line with the overall low rates of bribe-paying among the general public in these regions. 

8. Registrations and permits require the biggest bribes
In case of Albania, Cameroon, Gabon and Morocco over 40% respondents paid bribe. Incidence in Africa shows that the largest bribes are paid to the legal system and judiciary, followed by the police and education system. The average bribe to each of these organizations is greater than US $ 100. The amount paid to utilities organizations, which are the second most commonly bribed, is much lower. For many people in these countries even such an amount is significant; for the poorest it would be prohibitive, with the result that they may be denied basic services due to an inability to pay bribes. Incidence in North America appears to be very small and in Asia quite appreciable.

  •  Diplomacy means all the wicked devices of the Old World, spheres of influence, balances of power, secret treaties, triple alliances, and, during the interwar period, appeasement of Fascism._Barbara Tuchman (1912–89), U.S. historian.
  • Corruption is worse than prostitution. The latter might endanger the morals of an individual, the former invariably endangers the morals of the entire country. -Karl Kraus (1874–1936), Austrian satirist.
  • When I want to buy up any politician I always find the anti-monopolists the most purchasable — they don't come so high._William Vanderbilt (1821–85), U.S. industrialist.

7. Governments are under performing in the fight against corruption
The majority of people around the world have a poor opinion of their government's anti-corruption efforts. While one in five surveyed find government actions positive, more than half indicate that the government is not doing a good job. Perhaps most worrying is the fact that a full 15 percent of the public worldwide believe that not only is government not effective in its anti-corruption work, but that government is actually a source of the problem in that it encourages corruption. 

8.  Views on government efforts and public sector corruption do not always align
There is no correlation between a good score in the CPI 2006 and the public endorsement of a government's anti-corruption efforts. This may be because some governments will have been in power for only a short period of time when polling is done for the Barometer, while a country's performance in the CPI also reflects the performance of past administrations, not just the present one. In addition, good performance by government in anti-corruption can only come about through sustained change that translates into better quality of life for ordinary citizens.

9. Political parties and parliament still viewed around the world as most corrupt
The results of the TI Global Corruption Barometer 2006 show that political parties and parliament/legislature are perceived to be most affected by corruption The police are also viewed rather poorly, a result which coincides with the findings presented earlier in this report that the police are the institution most likely to be bribed around the world. Identifying parties, parliaments and police as corrupt throws into question some of the most representative and authoritative institutions in a society, and puts at risk their capacity to perform credibly with any degree of transparency and integrity.

Additional Notes
Determined to show the high cost of political embezzlement, the Berlin-based Transparency International had disclosed in 2004 
that Suharto, Indonesian president from 1967 to 1998, embezzled  $20.35 billion to $47.48 billion while in power from a state where GDP per person was just $943. Several other leaders were named in article entitled "World's most corrupt leaders named" by Jane Wardell on March 26, 2004.

The list had contained in Transparency's Global Corruption Report 2004, which had singled out several countries in Latin America, Africa, central and eastern Europe, and East Asia for corrupt practices in their political systems.

Peter Eigen, the then chairman of Transparency International, had said political corruption was undermining the stability of developing countries and damaging the global economy. 

Independent Asian observers, however, opined that just as US, UK and some other rich Western and developed Asian countries that  excel in technology, also excel in corruption and employ such sophisticated methods to steal public money that their chances of being caught are much less than those of their Asian counterparts. The lies and distortion about WMD and reasons for invading Iraq clear show, they say, how corrupt the Western leaders are. 

They also cite the views of Richard Rorty, Professor of comparative literature and philosophy at Stanford University who is attributed of saying: "We can, of course, continue to take justified pride in being citizens of a 200-year-old constitutional democracy. Yet our country can also be described, plausibly, as a corrupt plutocracy -- a country in which money buys nomination for high office, in which the rich routinely  bribe the legislatures, and in which voter apathy is on the increase."

Corruption is the single greatest obstacle to economic and social development

The Word Bank has identified corruption as the single greatest obstacle to economic and social development. It undermines development by distorting the rule of law and weakening the institutional foundation on which economic growth depends.

The harmful effects of corruption are especially severe on the poor, who are hardest hit by economic decline, are most reliant on the provision of public services, and are least capable of paying the extra costs associated with bribery, fraud, and the misappropriation of economic privileges. 

As pointed out by the World Bank, corruption sabotages policies and programs that aim to reduce poverty, so attacking corruption is critical to the achievement of the Bank's overarching mission of poverty reduction. We believe that an effective anticorruption strategy builds on five key elements:

1. Increasing Political Accountability
2. Strengthening Civil Society Participation 
3. Creating a Competitive Private Sector
4. Institutional Restraints on Power 
5. Improving Public Sector Management

To reduce the corrosive impact of corruption in a sustainable way, it is important to go beyond the symptoms to tackle the causes of corruption. Since 1996, the World Bank has supported more than 600 anticorruption programs and governance initiatives developed by its member countries.

Shah Nawaz Khan has vast experience in marketing and supervising life insurance sales force besides underwriting and advertising.  He retired as Executive Director of State Life Insurance Corporation. He is now editing the weekly ezines that go to thousands of people around the world. For details of his Internet Consultancy visit his website