Corruption in Pakistan further increased: TI reveals statistics

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ISLAMABAD: Transparency International has revealed that corruption in Pakistan has increased further while ranking 124 out of 180 countries — dropping four spots over last year — in the newly released Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) by Transparency International, an annual index that ranks countries based on perceptions of public sector corruption.

According to Berlin based international organisation, Pakistan slipped four spots on the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2020 for second year in a row. In 2019, Pakistan ranked 120th on the global corruption list and 117 in 2018. The TI Pakistan chairperson says country’s score this year lowered despite billions of rupees recoveries made by NAB and Public Accounts Committee.

The 2020 edition of the CPI ranked 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption, drawing on 13 expert assessments and surveys of business executives.

Denmark and New Zealand topped the index this year, with 88 points each. Syria, Somalia and South Sudan are at the bottom of the chart with 14, 12 and 12 points, respectively.

Last year, Pakistan had ranked 120. On a scale of 0-100, with zero being ‘Highly Corrupt’ and 100 being ‘Very Clean’, the country’s corruption score stands at 31 — a point lower than last year’s 32 — indicating that the perception of corruption in the public sector has worsened slightly.

A reason behind the drop in Pakistan’s score on CPI list was its points in the ‘Rule of Law Index’ and ‘Varieties of Democracy’ (VDem) categories were lower than last year.

The questions asked by World Justice Programme (WJP) regarding ‘Rule of Law Index’ and ‘Varieties of Democracy’ are about the corruption of government officials viz legislatures, executives, judiciary, police and military, explained Sohail Muzaffar, the chairman of Pakistan’s chapter of Transparency International.

The government has to improve its performance in these four sectors, he emphasised.

The increase in corruption perception comes despite the extraordinary efforts of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) which claims to have recovered Rs363 billion in the last two years and the Public Accounts Committee, which claims to have recovered Rs300 billion over the same period, noted Muzaffar.

Pakistan’s score in CPI 2020 has lowered to 31/100 from 32/100 in 2019 and rank to 124/180 from 120/180 in 2019.

According to Sohail Muzaffar says Pakistan has scored less than last year on two counts: the rule of law index and varieties of democracy.

Meanwhile, corruption perceptions in other countries in the region including India (40 points), Iran (25 points) and Bangladesh (26 points) improved, even if by small margins. Afghanistan’s score (19) has also improved by three points and so did Turkey (40), according to CPI’s statistics. China, with a score of 42, ranks 78 on the list.