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Change in tact needed to address corruption in Kenya: TI

04 December 2013, 08:04 Eugene Odanga

Nairobi - The Transparency International Kenya Chapter has said that little is being done to address corruption in Kenya.

This is after the release of the 2013 world graft index Tuesday which saw Kenya post a similar score as it did in 2012. Kenya is ranked 136 out of 177 in the world in terms of the vice.

 “Kenya’s score has remained disappointingly low and stagnant over a long period of time. Evidently whatever efforts that have been put into the fight against corruption have borne little results. A new impetus and approach to this issue is required,” said Samuel Kimeu, Executive Director of TI Kenya.

Botswana remains the highest ranked country in Africa at position 30 with a score of 64, followed by Cape Verde at position 41 with a score of 58. Seychelles at position 47 with a score of 54, Rwanda at position 49 with a score 54 and Mauritius at position 52 with a score of 52 complete the top five African Countries. Guinea Bissau at position 163, with a score of 19, Libya at position 172 with a score of 15, South Sudan at position 173 with a score of 14, Sudan at position 174 with a score of 11 and Somalia at position 174 with a score of 8 are the 5 bottom ranked countries in Africa in the index.

Only six out of the 55 African Countries ranked in the index scored 50 and above, a possible indication of serious corruption problem on the continent.

“Africa fares badly in our view because of the opacity that afflicts public affairs. It is worth noting that few countries have effective access to information laws and free media. The solution is greater transparency and empowering of the public to ensure accountability of public officials and institutions,” said Kimeu.

In the Corruption Perceptions Index 2013, Denmark and New Zealand tie for first place with scores of 91. Finland (89), Sweden (89), Norway (85) and Singapore (85) complete the first five positions respectively.  South Sudan (14), Sudan (11), Afghanistan (8), Korea (North) (8) and Somalia (8) are the five countries placed at the bottom of the index.

“The top performers clearly reveal how transparency supports accountability and can stop corruption,” said Huguette Labelle, Chair of Transparency International. “Still, the better performers face issues like state capture, campaign finance and the oversight of big public contracts which remain major corruption risks.”

Corruption within the public sector remains the biggest challenge, not only in Kenya, but also globally, particularly in areas such as political parties, police, and justice systems.

Public institutions need to be more open about their work and officials must be more transparent in their decision-making. Corruption remains notoriously difficult to investigate and prosecute.

The Corruption Perceptions Index is based on experts’ opinions of public sector corruption. Countries’ scores can be helped by strong access to information systems and rules governing the behaviour of those in public positions, while a lack of accountability across the public sector coupled with ineffective public institutions hurts these perceptions.

The 2013 CPI draws on data sources from independent institutions specialising in governance and business climate analysis. The sources of information used for the 2013 CPI are based on data gathered in the past 24 months. The CPI includes only sources that provide a score for a set of countries/territories and that measure perceptions of corruption in the public sector. Transparency International reviews the methodology of each data source in detail to ensure that the sources used meet Transparency International’s quality standards. For a full list of the data sources, the type of respondents and the specific questions they ask, please see the CPI sources description document.

- News24

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