Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Nepal still one of the most corrupt countries

Though the country is mired with massive corruption, Nepal improved its position slightly in the annual Corruption Perceptions Index – an annual flagship publication of Transparency International – released today by the Transparency International-Nepal (TI-Nepal).

Whereas the index revealed in January 2022 had shown Nepal in the 117th position among 180 countries, the latest index places Nepal in the 110th position, according to the anti-corruption watchdog. Position-wise, it is a seven-step leap, but the score has improved just slightly, to 34 from 33, according to the report.

Despite some improvement in score, Nepal remains in the category of countries with rampant corruption, TI-Nepal’s press note reads, adding that in South Asia, Nepal has been ranked below Bhutan (25th), the Maldives (85th), India (85th) and Sri Lanka (101st). Pakistan (140th), Bangladesh (147th) and Afghanistan (150th) are the only countries behind Nepal.

According to the TI’s worldwide report, Nepal has not been able to control corruption.

“Despite the slight improvement, Nepal is still in the category of the countries where corruption is prevalent,” the anti-corruption watchdog’s Nepal chapter’s press note reads.

“Transparency International Nepal appeals to the concerned parties for addressing the conflict of interest, ending impunity, implementing laws and making controlling agencies more effective, thereby promoting good governance,” the press note reads, adding that an improvement in the Corruption Perceptions Index can be expected in the future, if such efforts are meaningful.

“The import and export were decreased in 2022 as compared to 2021,” chairperson of TI-Nepal Padmini Pradhananga at a programme organized here today by TI-Nepal. 

“Nepal got more points in the survey of World Economic Forum due to decline in corruption relating to import and export,” she said, adding that Denmark is in the first position with 90 points while Somalia is in the last position with 12 points. “Of the 180 countries, 58 countries have received more than 50 points.”

Six different international organisations – World Bank, World Economic Forum, Global Insight, Bertelsmann Foundation, World Justice and Varieties of Democratic Project (V-Dem) – had carried out survey of CPI in Nepal.

The survey was carried out on various topics including work performance of public office holders, access of civil society in information, import, export, public service, contract, judicial decision, trade, business, corruption, bribe, misuse of public post by the representatives of government, parliament, judiciary and security bodies for personal interest. 

Transparency Intentional (TI) unveils Corruption Perceptions Index every year.

TI uses a scale of zero to 100, where zero is the most corrupt and 100 is the least corrupt. A score below 50 is considered as having a relatively higher level of corruption in a country. 

The CPI global average remains unchanged at 43 for the eleventh year in a row, and more than two-thirds of countries have a serious problem with corruption, scoring below 50.

Denmark (90) tops the index this year, with Finland and New Zealand following closely, both at 87. South Sudan (13), Syria (13) and Somalia (12), all of which are embroiled in protracted conflict, remain at the bottom of the CPI.

In his message, chief executive officer of TI Daniel Eriksson said leaders could fight corruption and promote peace all at once. “Governments must open up space to include the public in decision-making, from activists and business owners to marginalised communities and young people.”

He expressed belief that in democratic societies, people could raise their voices to help root out corruption and demand a safer world for us all.

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