Afghanistan’s ranking in graft index improves
KABUL (Pajhwok): Afghanistan’s ranking in the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2014 has improved with the Transparency International (TI) that hoped in its latest report Kabul would intensify efforts to combat the menace.
The scores of Afghanistan rose by four points as per the index of the Transparency International. Earlier, Afghanistan ranked among first and second corrupt countries.
More than two-thirds of the 175 countries in the 2014 Corruption Perceptions Index score below 50, on a scale from 0 (perceived to be highly corrupt) to 100 (perceived to be very clean). Denmark comes out on top in 2014 with a score of 92 while North Korea and Somalia share last place, scoring just eight.
“The 2014 Corruption Perceptions Index shows that economic growth is undermined and efforts to stop corruption fade when leaders and high level officials abuse power to appropriate public funds for personal gain,” said José Ugaz, the chair of Transparency International.
“Corrupt officials smuggle ill-gotten assets into safe havens through offshore companies with absolute impunity,” Ugaz added. “Countries at the bottom need to adopt radical anti-corruption measures in favour of their people. Countries at the top of the index should make sure they don’t export corrupt practices to underdeveloped countries.”
Corruption is a problem for all economies, requiring leading financial centres in the EU and US to act together with fast-growing economies to stop the corrupt from getting away with it, anti-corruption group Transparency International said today.
The scores of several countries rose or fell by four points or more. The biggest falls were in Turkey (-5), Angola, China, Malawi and Rwanda (all -4). The biggest improvers were Côte d´Ivoire, Egypt, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (+5), Afghanistan, Jordan, Mali and Swaziland (+4).
The Corruption Perceptions Index is based on expert opinions of public sector corruption. Countries’ scores can be helped by open government where the public can hold leaders to account, while a poor score is a sign of prevalent bribery, lack of punishment for corruption and public institutions that don’t respond to citizens’ needs.
“Grand corruption in big economies not only blocks basic human rights for the poorest but also creates governance problems and instability. Fast-growing economies whose governments refuse to be transparent and tolerate corruption, create a culture of impunity in which corruption thrives,” said Ugaz.
Transparency International called on countries at the top of the index where public sector corruption is limited to stop encouraging it elsewhere by doing more to prevent money laundering and to stop secret companies from masking corruption.
“None of us would fly on planes that do not register passengers, yet we allow secret companies to conceal illegal activity. Public registers that show who really owns a company would make it harder for the corrupt to take off with the spoils of their abuse of power,” said Transparency International Managing Director Cobus de Swardt.
Most of the donors were extending their aid to the Afghan government conditionally that Kabul would combat the menace of corruption.
Dr. Shafiq Hamdam, chairman of the Afghan anti-corruption network, expressed satisfaction following improvement in Afghanistan’s ranking in the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2014.
However, at the same time, speaking to Pajhwok Afghan News Hamdam said: “It was a moment of shock for the Afghan nation and the government that Afghanistan is among the five corrupt countries.”
He demanded the government to adopt strict measures to combat the menace of corruption with renewed force.
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