Who needs “resources” to be cursed by corruption? Kenya falls below Nigeria on 2014 Transparency International index

In the 2014 Transparency International Corruption Perception Index released this week, Kenya tied for 145th worst out of 174 countries, with a score of 25 out of a possible 100, down from 27 in 2013 and 2014.  Nigeria received a 27.

According to the East African Bribery Index for 2014 released by Transparency International in Nairobi, for Kenya, as reported by The Standard, “Police service highest receiver of bribes shows report”:

.  .  .  .
On the probability of actual payment of a bribe when interacting with a sector, the police service was ranked first at 71.1 per cent. The tax service department was second at 31.4 per cent followed by the county administration at 25.9 per cent.
On the national share of the “national bribe”, the police service received the biggest share and almost accounted for almost half of all the bribes paid at 43.5 per cent. The land service department was second at 11.9 per cent followed by the Judiciary at 11.6 per cent.
“Majority of those who interacted with NPS felt if they had not given bribe, they would not have received the services. Twenty-seven per cent of those interacting with Lands services and 26.2 per cent with the Judiciary held the same view,” the report said.
It also emerged that 94 per cent of Kenyans do not report any bribery incident to any authority since majority say they do not know where to report. Others believed no action would be taken towards resolving their complaint.
The report described the current state of corruption in the country as high, with 54 per cent of the people saying corruption had increased within the last 12 months.
Friday’s “Big Story” in the Business Daily reports “Police Chiefs Used Secret Account to Steal Sh2.8bn from taxpayers around the time of the 2013 election.  Before the latest massacre in Mandera, the Kenyan media was starting to pay real attention to the latest #Chickengate scandal involving bribes at the Independent Electoral and Boundary Commission (IEBC) after Britain’s Serious Fraud Office brought the bribe payers to public trial over corruption in the contracts to print ballots. (No new news on the other IEBC procurement fraud cases involving the various technology purchases that have been outstanding since directed by the Supreme Court in April 2013.)
 But, not to worry:

Transparency International Annual Corruption Perception Index released [corrected and updated]

The new Transparency International corruption perception rankings for 2010 have been released today.

For East Africa:

66 Rwanda (4.0 score on a scale of 10) [up from 3.3 for 2009]
116 Ethiopia (2.7) [unchanged]
116 Tanzania (2.7) [up from 2.6]
127 Uganda (2.5) [unchanged]
154 Kenya (2.1) [down from 2.2]
170 Burundi (1.8) [unchanged]
172 Sudan (1.6) [up from 1.5]
178 Somalia (1.1–lowest) [unchanged]

The United States dropped to 22nd with a 7.1 score.

The new report was drawn from surveys taken from January 2009 to September 2010.

For these listed East African countries, there was no demonstrated significant change from 2009 to 2010.

Given its methodology, the CPI is not a tool that is
suitable for trend analysis or for monitoring changes in the
perceived levels of corruption over time for all countries.
Year-to-year changes in a country/territory’s score can
result from a change in the perceptions of a country’s
performance, a change in the ranking provided by original
sources or changes in the methodology resulting from TI’s
efforts to improve the index.
If a country is featured in one or more specific data
sources for both of the last two CPIs (2009 CPI and 2010
CPI), those sources can be used to identify whether there
has been a change in perceived levels of corruption in
that particular country compared to the previous year.
TI has used this approach in 2010 to assess country
progress over the past year and to identify what can be
considered to be a change in perceptions of corruption.
These assessments use two criteria:
(a) there is a year-on-year change of at least 0.3 points in
a country’s CPI score, and
(b) the direction of this change is confirmed by more than
half of the data sources evaluating that country.
Based on these criteria, the following countries showed
an improvement from 2009 to 2010: Bhutan, Chile, Ecuador,
FYR Macedonia, Gambia, Haiti, Jamaica, Kuwait and
Qatar. The following countries showed deterioration from
2009 to 2010: the Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary,
Italy, Madagascar, Niger and the United States.

“Where Are the Global Anti-Corruption Leaders?” asks former GE General Counsel

In The Atlantic, Ben W. Heineman, Jr., the illustrious former general counsel of General Electric, pens a strongly worded criticism of the state of corruption in global business and the state of developed world commitment to combating it.

Of the recent BAE settlement, Heineman notes the years of stonewalling and denials, and the decision by the British government not to pursue the massive bribery case involving BAE sales to Saudi Arabia after key Saudi officials threatened to diminish terrorism cooperation–but also motivated Heineman says by an underlying reason: to protect British jobs and trade. He notes that only after the US initiated its own prosecution did the British act, and says that in spite of the “technical” nature of the charges to which BAE pled, “BAE would not pay $450 million for technical offenses”.

The BAE and Siemens cases are symbols of pervasive corruption across the globe and lack of senior leadership making anti-corruption an international imperative. Bribery and extortion in public sector activities–especially in the developing world–distorts competition, erodes legitimacy and rule of law, impedes economic growth, thwarts building of institutional infrastructure, injures the poor and supports criminals and terrorists who pose a threat to world order. Corruption thus directly and seriously implicates foreign policy, national security, economic, developmental and humanitarian concerns.

. . . .

The BAE and Siemens settlements are cases in point. If these iconic developed world companies had such widespread issues, it is reasonable to think that they are hardly alone. Although both Germany and the U.K. have had laws prohibiting foreign bribery by their multinational corporations since at least 1999, there had been little national enforcement prior to these cases. In both BAE and Siemens, the U.S. (which has a history of strong enforcing laws against foreign bribery) was deeply involved and helped push the companies to a major resolution because of their dependence on the U.S. market. . . .

. . . .

More importantly, a 2009 report by Transparency International, evaluated the enforcement activities of 36 nations which had signed the 1997 OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials and enacted national laws giving it effect. (Disclosure: I am on the board of Transparency International-USA.) That report concluded that only 4 out of 36 countries evaluated are actively enforcing the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention, with moderate enforcement in 11 other countries and little to no enforcement in 21 or more than half. Among the obstacles noted by the report were: antiquated bribery laws, outright political obstruction of investigations, lack of adequate funding for prosecutors or curtailing the powers of investigative magistrates.

This problem is in the developed world (!!), not in the developing world ,where anti-corruption efforts are infinitely more complex given the varying histories and cultures of individual nations. . . .

Heineman identifies committed global leadership, by someone such as the US Secretary of State or the President of the World Bank, as the necessary step to move the developed world to act.