Tuesday, November 24, 2020

More than half Nepalis believe corruption increased in a year

 More than the half population in the country thinks corruption has increased in Nepal in last one year, according to a report released by the Transparency International (TI).

Some 58 per cent of Nepalis – the highest in Asia – think corruption has increased in the country in past 12 months, the report reads, adding that corruption is pervasive in Nepal. “Specifically, corruption is an issue in government procurement, mainly involving politicians and bureaucrats, as well as public service delivery, with citizens facing problems even in critical sectors like health and education."

The bribery rate is 12 per cent, the report adds.

Nepalis perception of the state of corruption in the country is the worst among the 17 countries and territories surveyed by the Transparency International (TI). People perceive corruption at all levels of government in Nepal, from the top to the local level.

Unfortunately, there are many examples where corruption pervades daily life, including a high profile land grab case involving senior public officials and the illegal transfer of state property, it reads

Though Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has repeatedly vowed to control corruption, his administration has done little to combat it. On the contrary, Oli has defended cabinet colleagues, who have been named in corruption scandals, while critics raise concerns that the independent anticorruption agency has not pursued any grand corruption cases. 

People’s growing frustrations with government and apathy towards corruption have spurred the ‘Enough is Enough’ campaign (COVID 19) street protests and support for Dr Govinda KC’s medical-sector reform agenda, the report reads, adding that a truly committed political leadership and a strong people’s movement are essential to control increasing corruption.

According to the TI report, some 84 per cent of Nepalis think corruption in government is a big problem, whereas some 37 per cent of people think the government is doing badly tackling corruption. “But some 62 per cent of people think the government is doing well in tackling corruption.”

Likewise, some 12 per cent people paid bribe for public service in the past 12 months, whereas some 29 per cent used personal connection for public service in past 12 months, the report reads, adding that some 13 per cent also offered bribes in exchange of votes. “Some 7 per cent experienced sextortion or know someone who has.”

The report has also revealed that people in President and Prime Minister’s office are the most corrupt. “Some 50 per cent or half of the people in President and Prime Minister’s office are corrupt,” the report reads, adding that some 43 per cent of Members of Parliament, and government officials are corrupt. “Likewise, 40 per cent of local government officials, 35 per cent business executives, and 28 per cent police is also corrupt.”

Bankers are the least corrupt as 13 per cent of bankers are corrupt – which is very unusual – followed by Army leaders – with 18 per cent – are corrupt, according to the TI report. “The 27 per cent of non-government offices (NGOs), some 24 per cent of judges and magistrates, and 23 per cent religious leaders are also corrupt,” the TI report adds.

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