Friday, May 20, 2022

Global corruption rising amid ‘democratic decline’

According to an analysis by Transparency International, the fight against corruption has stalled over the past decade amid human rights abuses and democratic decline in all regions of the world.

The organization’s Corruption Perceptions Index ranks 180 countries based on perceived levels of public sector corruption using a scale from zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean), using data from dozens of sources, including the World Bank.

Stability

The 2021 report shows that 86% of countries have seen little or no improvement over the past decade.

“Of the 180 countries on our index, 134 are more or less the same in 2012,” said Roberto Kukutska, a research coordinator at Transparency International.

“We only see some significant improvement in 25 countries around the world. Also, we see a decline in 23 countries. And we see it … in all regions of the world. The only place where we see any significant improvement does not appear, however, in the Middle East and North Africa,” Kukutska told VOA.

The top countries are Denmark, Finland and New Zealand, which all score 88 out of 100 on the index.

democratic decline

Several Western democracies have slipped in the rankings, including the United States, Canada and Australia.

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“something is happening [in] The countries that were at the top of the index earlier,” Kukutska said. “So when we look at countries like Canada, the United States or Australia — [they] Were at the top of our index and always promoting the fight against corruption, not only in their own countries, but also abroad – starting … to bring down the index.

“This is a wake-up call for many countries at the top of the index,” he said. “They need to look after their institutions; They need to address the issue of corruption, because I think it is far more difficult to build back what you have lost than to preserve what you have and improve from there. ,

freedom of press

“We also have had the spread of misinformation and fake news, which I think undermine the credibility of one of the most important anti-corruption watchdogs, that is the media and the press,” Kukutska told VOA.

Some EU member states have also fallen sharply in the corruption index over the past 10 years, including Poland and Hungary.

“We’ve seen the clampdown on press freedom,” Kukutska said. “We have also clamped down on academic freedom, with even some universities having to leave the country.”

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confrontation

Somalia, Syria and South Sudan – countries hit by years of conflict – are at the bottom of the index. Twenty-seven nations, including Cyprus, Lebanon and Honduras, are at historical levels of corruption.

There has been an increase in alleged corruption in Mali after successive military coups. Under President Rodrigo Duterte, the Philippines has seen a major increase in corruption, along with crackdowns on freedom of expression. Similarly, alleged corruption in Venezuela has risen sharply under President Nicolas Maduro.

most improved

Notable reforms have taken place in the Baltic states of Estonia and Latvia, and Armenia in particular, says Kukutska. “The old government was overthrown by civil protests a few years ago, and now we have another reformist government that is truly committed to the fight against corruption.”

Transparency International identified a clear pattern in the data: the link between anti-corruption and democracy.

“Complacency in fighting corruption exacerbates human rights abuses and undermines democracy, creating a vicious cycle,” the report said. “As these rights and freedoms end and democracy collapses, authoritarianism takes its place, also contributing to high levels of corruption.”

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This article is republished from – Voa News – Read the – original article.

Nation World News Desk
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