The global perception survey on corruption from Transparency International shows South Africa’s position has worsened again. The country is now ranked 69 out of 176 countries surveyed in 2012, a decline from last year’s 64th position out of 183 countries.
“We are not surprised,” commented Corruption Watch executive director David Lewis. “The survey echoes what we hear in the thousands of reports from ordinary people confronting corruption daily.”
The Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index measures perceived levels of public sector corruption and ranks countries based on a score from 0 (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean). South Africa came in at 43, which makes it one of the countries perceived to have high levels of public sector corruption.
Lewis said while many leaders in the public and private sectors were deeply concerned about corruption, “the public can’t help but see the disjuncture between strong words and weak action.”
“We are flooded with important policy documents like the National Development Plan and comments by the minister of finance among others condemning corruption. And yet the year ends with some very serious corruption allegations directed at no less than the president and his family and the unfortunate decision to forge ahead with the Secrecy Bill.”
“The Transparency International report confirms what a number of local surveys have concluded”, he said. “But Corruption Watch takes some comfort that the vast majority of the respondents to the South African Social Attitudes Survey indicated that they want to take a proactive stance in combating corruption. Some 85% claim that they would report an incident of corruption, while 82% agree that ordinary people could make a difference in the fight against corruption.”
“It is this sentiment that we are tapping into and which remains a vital instrument in confronting this economically costly and socially debilitating scourge.”
Report corruption to www.corruptionwatch.org.za, or SMS “BRIBE” to 45142 (R1 per SMS).
For more information
David Lewis: 082 576 3748/ Bongi Mlangeni: 076 862 9086